On the strength of a well-received debut album and successful tours with Magnum and Dragonforce, among others, Neonfly's experience and exposure has been elevated. They return with their second album, Strangers In Paradise, hoping to keep the momentum going.
It's another album of classic melodic hard rock, yet reinforced with a metal edge and often performed in an accessible AOR wrapper. For that metal scenario the instrumental Aztec Gold followed by Fierce Battalions offers something nearing power metal in it's pace and bombastic package. Highways To Nowhere brings the heaviness as well with a thundering bottom end and vocalist Willy Norton bringing his tough and raspy metal voice. Mostly it's a good mixture of all three parts, AOR melodic hard rock and heavy metal dovetailing together as with Chasing The Light and Heart of the Sun, two of the most versatile songs in arrangement. Alternatively, Neonfly can calm things down. Rose In Bloom and Falling Star are lighter ballads moving upon the strength of vocal arrangements (Norton is an exceptional vocalist) and melody, with the other instruments lifting both. But these are the strengths of Neonfly, adding Frederick Thunder's fine song composition and fiery guitar, they bring consistent and entertaining music, solid melodic hard rock and metal. It's easy to see how they've found some favor with their peers, touring with them. Strangers In Paradise is easily recommended.
The strengths of Neonfly are self-evident: good song composition, distinct melody and harmony, powerful vocals, and the right mixture of heavy metal with AOR melodic hard rock make Strangers In Paradise a fine listen. Recommended.
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