NORWAY – Rising Up From The Ashes

NORWAY - Rising Up From The Ashes
  • 8/10
    NORWAY - Rising Up From The Ashes - 8/10


Release Date: January 17, 2007

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Norway is an AOR band heading out from New Jersey and was formed way back in 1986. Their first release, Night Dreams (1997), became a big hit in Europe’s and Japan’s Melodic Rock scene. Three years later, they released another album called Arrival, which was quite a good album as well, and it did well in the Melodic Rock scene. Now, seven long years later, Norway finally is releasing another and an even more fabulous album. Rising Up From The Ashes is nothing less than the very best AOR release in a very long time. It seems like AOR finally is on its way back!

The album starts out with a guitar riff, which certainly brings back the 80s feeling. “Save Me” is an outstanding AOR song that could easily have been written sometime in the late 80s. This one can remind you a little of Journey meets Bon Jovi. The keyboards are the backbone of the music of Norway. Though the keyboards aren’t dominating the tunes at all, it still makes you wonder how everything would sound without them. There’s nothing original about this song or any of the other songs on the record, but taking the music back to what it once was is nothing to regret.

The third song on this album is the great power ballad entitled “Only One I Need,” which has a refrain that sticks in your head when you hear it, and this is definitely the ultimate AOR ballad so far this year. The only thing you’ll really miss is the distinctly 80’s snare drum echo. It may be a good thing dropping that trait, and it makes the music fit more into today’s Melodic Rock scene as well. After all, it’s not the 80’s anymore.

“Since You’ve Been Gone” is another beautiful ballad. It starts out with the choir singing the title of the song. It’s just awesome, and it has to be said that the vocal harmonies on this record really are stunning! The guitar sound is also very nice, not too sharp as many other AOR bands have a tendency towards. It’s a really melodic sound that fits the music amazingly well.

The following track, “Tell Me,” must be the best track on this record. The melody is a little mysterious and tells the story of lost love. The bridge before the refrain is just fantastic, featuring a nice vocal line on top of the great drive in the music. The following chorus is the most remarkable moment on this record. Vocal harmonies and pompous keyboards make this a real joy when listening … and not to mention the guitar solo which is fulgent!

This is an album that will gain Norway a lot of attention and, of course, a lot of success. Great musical influences from bands such as Bon Jovi, Foreigner, Journey, and Night Ranger have given the band their own characteristic style. The songs sound different from each other, not in a very sensible way, but the variation is there. Rising Up From The Ashes consists of pure timeless Rock ‘N’ Roll, and so far it seems like 2007 will become a good year for AOR music. Norway has opened up the New Year with an absolute Melodic Rock masterpiece!


Jim Santos – Guitars, keyboards, and backing vocals
Marty Brasington – Drums
Dave Baldwin – Lead vocals, keyboards, and backing vocals
Joe Slattery – Bass and backing vocals


  1. Save Me
  2. Anything At All
  3. Only One I Need
  4. American Girl
  5. The Power Of Gold
  6. Since You’ve Been Gone
  7. Tell Me (Is that the way it is)
  8. Won’t Let You Down
  9. Haunted


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