Release Date: January 2005

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Norway owns a secret, but it’s time to give it away: Locked inside the borders of The Land Of The Midnight Sun, you can find one of the world’s finest AOR bands. They are called Stage Dolls, and up front singer/guitar player Torstein Flakne stands out as one of the most clever melody makers in the history of commercial Hard Rock.

Once, back in the late 80’s, their song “Love Cries” hit the Billboard Top 100. Stage Dolls (three piece) toured as a support band for Blue Murder, Fish, and Warrant, and seemingly looked like they were grabbing a bite of worldwide success. Then they failed to achieve a further international breakthrough.

Back in 2003, they managed to make a successfully comeback in their home country, with their “Best Of” album Good Times. At last, after sailing through some rough waters in the nineties, the time was right for these merry merchants of melancholy to market their goods from the past … and then some.

Last year they released their first studio album since 1997. This album, (read the review here), did not put Norway on fire, but their following tour proved that Stage Dolls was a name that wouldn’t leave a gig poster unnoticed.

Get A Live was recorded in the band’s hometown Trondheim in late 2003. As those familiar to the band would notice from the track list below, there are not a lot numbers included from the band’s latest releases. However, this is not surprising since this is Stage Dolls’ first live album since they started 20 years ago. So it was about time to give the fans live versions of their most established standards. This, despite the fact that their last studio album Get A Life contained some great tracks – which even proved to turn out even better at their live shows. That studio album has even given name to this live album … still, Get A Live takes decent care of the good, old moments of the band’s career.

However, fronted by the very skilled singer/guitar player Torstein Flakne, this album conveys some really heartfelt performances by a band that still delivers their old hits as if they were written yesterday – as if the guys in the band were nineteen years old, unsigned, and if the venue was filled with record company headhunters.

Even if Flakne & co tends to turn a bit mellow from time to time, this is notably honest Rock and Roll. This is not one of the live albums that has gone through an advanced makeover in the mix. These guys approach their game in an unpretentious way, that most people should take their hats of for in respect. Flakne has always composed some complicated guitar stuff to sing on the top of, and if he, live ends up missing a note or two, there is not a second he would spare on being ashamed, not even at the mixing table. If you want a true live performance recorded, this is the album to buy.

Other reasons to purchase this album: tracks like “Love Cries,” “Hard To Say Goodbye,” “Sorry Is All I Can Say,” “Still In Love,” “Wings Of Steel,” and “Ten Tons Of Rock ’N’ Roll” are all killers. The female backing singers brought in lift any track they appear on, and the band itself squeezes these songs out of their souls. “Love Don’t Bother Me” towers as one of the strongest laid back moments in the history of Rock ‘n’ Roll ballads. The song is a rare piece. Flakne comments “Love Don’t Bother Me” himself on “Get A Live’s” bonus DVD disc: “Throw me any other song by anybody, and I still won’t trade it.” This track sure is a gem.

Norwegian record companies have always been scared by the thought of spending money on marketing Norwegian bands abroad. The fear of loosing money on unsuccessful projects has limited their bravery down to nothing. Trust me, Stage Dolls are one darn good example of a Norwegian band that should be touring the world right now. If you, as a fan of Melodic Hard Rock, don’t believe this statement, purchase Get A Live and try to prove me wrong afterwards.


Torstein Flakne – Vocals, guitar
Terje Storli – Bass
Morten Skogstad – Drums
Trond Hustad – Keyboards


Stand By You
Hard To Say Goodbye
Sorry Is All I Can Say
Still In Love
Wings Of Steel
Love Don’t Bother Me
Left Foot Boogie
Ten Tons Of Rock ’N’ Roll
Heart To Heart
Soldier’s Gun


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