Catalano is the namesake of guitarist Pat Catalano, forming the band after several members helped with his solo album Only A Dream. The band has a small claim to fame in that it has as vocalist, Dean Pressley, from the obscure hair metal band Ginger Lynn. Currently, since the recording of the debut album, Pressley has been recovering from a significant heart attack.
As one would suspect, being formed by a guitarist, Into The Darkness is definitely a guitar-centered album. While comments made on their website by the band and others suggest that their sound is unique, the opposite is true. This is mixture of classic Eighties melodic hard rock and metal, with their obvious influences shining through, from the likes of Queensryche, Dokken, Metallica, and Journey. Listening to Pressley, with a style somewhere between Tate and Dickinson, Catalano can sound like Queensryche at times. But, I'm sure if they wanted to pad their live set, they could probably add some Iron Maiden. Seems I recall seeing a video of a live cover of The Wicked Man on their website. Call their music a hybrid, if anything, made fresh.
But on the strength of Into The Darkness, Catalano doesn't need to cover anybody. The album blisters with good songwriting, musicianship and production. You've got some songs that are heavier, nearing the melodic metal side of things, with Burn, Into The Darkness, and Changes. Alternatively, Sirens, the catchy Little's Enough and One More Time steer more towards melodic hard rock, with more than a little AOR current whisping through. Throughout Pressley's vocals soar and Pat Catalano makes that guitar sing with sweet solos in every song. The one caveat: it's too short, with eight songs just over 32 minutes. With little doubt, Into The Darkness is a promising and entertaining debut for this talented band, expect more and better to come. Easily recommended.
With little doubt, Into The Darkness is a promising and entertaining debut for this talented band, expect more and better to come. Easily recommended.
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