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China Blue - 'Twilight of Destiny'


Geoff
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In the late 80's keyboardist Eric Ragno (Takara, Ted Poley, Steve Grimmett, American Angel, Danny Vaughn, Hugo/Ramos and countless others) started a new band called China Blue with his best friend Tom Gasbarro. Eric wrote the music and Tom was the lyrical engineer. The songs written at the time used to explore those avenues of defining moments...decisions that were made in the “Twilight of Destiny”. According to Eric, “It is where you either won the girl or lost it all in a sea of regret; the pivotal epiphany that the thing you love most just got away. We did things on our own terms and even after Tom moved on, I swore I would pick it up again one day”.

 

Eric's career gained momentum with bands like Vox Tempus and moved in a different directions until he played some of the old China Blue demos to his friend Michael Riesenbeck. Michael encouraged Eric to take the best out of the songs and add new material to round out a complete album. He and Eric co-wrote some great songs together and he pushed Eric to start the job to put together a recording line-up for the album and just go out and do his own thing.

 

On vocals, Eric recruited none other than the new TNT and former Shy singer Tony Mills, a legendary voice that added a special touch to the recording. As soon as Riesenbeck stepped out of the project, Josh Ramos (of The Storm, Hardline) immediately took the chance to be part of the project. Eric and Josh had already worked on a number of projects together (Ramos, Los Angles, From The Inside) and the pair spent several weeks together writing in San Francisco. Zane Petersen (Malicious, Conditioned Response) was a long-time friend of Eric's who helped him in various career circumstances and was the perfect choice with his powerful drumming. The final piece of the puzzle was Doug Odell on bass, he came about at the MelodicRock.com festival in Chicago during 2008 when he and Eric played in front of an amazing crowd with the “Melodic Rock All Stars” band.

 

Additional musicians Ronny Smith on guitar, Pete Newdeck on drums and Fabrizio Grossi on bass appear as special guests, offering their incredible performances on this fabulous debut album.

 

“Twilight of Destiny” was produced by Eric, mixed by JK Northrup and took shape as a true Melodic Rock masterpiece during 2008 under the direction of executive producer and manager Ron Vining. This record is absolute delight for all fans of classic Shy, Journey and The Storm music with a slight Progressive edge. The classic 80's album artwork was designed by Wavid.

 

“This China Blue record has truly been a journey for all involved” concludes Eric Ragno. “We hope the music touches you in some way as it helped us explore who we are, when we faced those defining moments in life at the Twilight of Destiny”.

 

· What Do You Need But Love

· I Feel Like Dying

· Changing Ways

· So Wrong

· Don't Be A Stranger

· Crimes (of Passion)

· Passions

· Movin' On

· Twilight of Destiny

· Lost

· Take Me As I Am

· A Last Goodbye

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Not a bad disc, this one. Missing the really great moments, but it's not bad. I don't think I've ever verbalized this, but it has become apparent that I am not a fan of Tony Mills' voice. I like him in Shy because he is the voice of Shy, but that's about where it ends.

 

So that is one downside of the disc for me. But on the upside, I haven't heard Mills sing a decent song since the last Shy album. His solo discs are both far from good and obviously the two TNT albums are just shocking... so it's good to hear him singing some good material again. I'd actually call this, easily, the best project he's done outside Shy... which means imo it's much better than Siam too.

 

This one should be well worth checking out for melodic hard rock fans out there... especially fans of Shy.

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Not a bad disc, this one. Missing the really great moments, but it's not bad. I don't think I've ever verbalized this, but it has become apparent that I am not a fan of Tony Mills' voice. I like him in Shy because he is the voice of Shy, but that's about where it ends.

 

So that is one downside of the disc for me. But on the upside, I haven't heard Mills sing a decent song since the last Shy album. His solo discs are both far from good and obviously the two TNT albums are just shocking... so it's good to hear him singing some good material again. I'd actually call this, easily, the best project he's done outside Shy... which means imo it's much better than Siam too.

 

This one should be well worth checking out for melodic hard rock fans out there... especially fans of Shy.

 

A fair review of this album. :tumbsup:

 

I've certainly given it more than one spin.

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