The glory days of 80's melodic rock are alive and well in the Swedish band H.E.A.T and their wonderful first work, 'Heat.' The influences of Toto, Giant, and Journey are more than self-evident here. There's melody, harmony, groove, and sometimes funk in their songs. 'Heat' is solid melodic rock for the 21st century: great song composition and arrangements, outstanding vocals, a great rhythm section, bright keyboards, sterling guitar work and above all else, tons of enthusiasm. 'Heat' is a thoroughly enjoyable album.
Several things jump out as you listen to this work. Vocalist Kenny Leckremo is simply stunning: enthusiastic, clear and dynamic. Dave Dalone and Eric Rivers deliver brilliant guitar licks. As for the rest of the band, they perform as a well oiled machine. The sound is nearly perfect thanks to a great mix and production. This album is loaded with melodic music that will engage you with hard rock to ballads to simple AOR.
After the opening lift off, 'There For You' is a great melodic rocker with a fine guitar solo. Another stand out follows in 'Never Let Go,' where Mr. Leckremo interjects some improvisational words of encouragement to the band as the guitar solo rips. 'Follow Me' is one of several impressive ballads thanks to the emotional vocals built upon a fine arrangement. 'Straight For Your Heart' has the blessings of a great melody and a catchy chorus. 'Cry' will overwhelm you with the Leckremo's highly emotional vocals surrounded by a great composition. The guitar may sound subdued compared to other songs, yet it is incredibly inspiring. 'Cry' is the best song on the album. Be careful to listen also for 'Straight Up' with it's minimal yet obvious blues-like motif.
H.E.A.T is definitely on to something here. They perform melodic rock like veterans. They know their musical history and so the elements of fine melodic rock. 'Heat' is an impressive debut. Every lover of classic melodic hard rock should find this album and add it to their collection. You will enjoy it over and over again. Highly recommended!
- Craig Hartranft
Sweden's H.E.A.T bring the melodic rock fire on their debut album aptly titled 'Heat.' This is great and finely tuned melodic rock with great and varied arrangements and tons of confidence. Great music!