Boulevard - Boulevard IV - Luminescence

Boulevard - Boulevard IV - Luminescence cover
Boulevard IV - Luminescence
Melodic Rock Records
There’s a saying that says better late than never… and that fits the Boulevard case ideally. First things first, Boulevard were formed in 1984, released their self-titled debut in 1988 and their sophomore one “Into the Street” in 1990. After a huge break of 24 years, the band re-appeared and performed at Firefest in Nottingham England, in 2014. Moreover, in 2015, they released “Boulevard – Live from Gastown” a DVD which features all five of the band’s Canadian top 40 singles, as well as some classic tracks from the band’s repertoire. Thankfully, that live performance and the DVD release helped the band move forward and start recording their new (third) studio album, which is titled “Boulevard IV – Luminescence” and it was released about 27 years after the release of their second one! How about that?!
Fast forward to 2017 and the band’s new album has all the music elements they used to have, plus a more contemporary sound. They do not try to sound “retro” like others, but they prove that being up-to-date and playing melodic rock/AOR music is easy to do without the need to sound intensively “retro” for the sake of it. The band nowadays consists of the “old ones” David Forbes on vocals, Andrew Johns on keyboards, Mark Holden on saxophone, Randall Stoll on drums and the new ones Dave Corman on guitars and Cory Curtis on bass. The guys haven’t lost their creativity, their passion and their aspiration for music… it feels like not a single day has passed since their last release. They do sound so fresh, strong and complete in general.
All the songs are well-crafted and they will please the band’s fans and not only; as for the tracks themselves, on a mini analysis we have: “Out of the Blue” (a fine AOR opener), “Life is a Beautiful Thing” (a wonderful melodic rocker), “Laugh or Cry” (a decent powerful pop/rocker),“What I’d Give” (a splendid and expressive power-ballad), “Come Together” (an up-tempo AOR track with rockin’ touches), “Runnin Low” (amazing AOR tune with terrific sax), “I Can’t Tell You Why” (astonishing AOR track – love that superb sax), “Confirmation” (a pleasurable ballad), “Slippin Away” (an enjoyable melodic rocker), “What Are You Waiting For” (what a meaningful & emotional ballad) and “Don’t Stop the Music” (an wonderful AOR track with a pop/rock flavor). Moreover, guitarists Keith Scott & Al Vermue are participating in “Slippin Away” as well. The album was recorded at Abbey Road Studio, London, UK, Warehouse Studio, Vancouver BC, and Westsonic Music, Vancouver BC. The production was done by Mark Holden, Dave Corman, and Eric Mosher. The sound is full, powerful and crystal clear.
No matter how many years may pass, some bands are meant to be around offering us great music as they had done so back in their prime. Boulevard is one of those bands that do love music more than anything and no matter how many years might pass they will be around to do what pleases them utmost. Every AOR/melodic rock fan should check out this album… and better be ready to be nicely surprised. Let’s hope that Boulevard will be around making music for the next years without any long breaks anymore.