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Wow, I just did a search on these guys and there's not a single thread on them here. Surprising for a band with a discography the size of theirs, not to mention three albums with Jeff Scott Soto on vocals.


Anyway, what are the general thoughts on these guys? Would I be right to assume the lack of enthusiasm around them is because the albums with JSS were released in a time when it seemed like he was on 48 different CDs per year?


I always thought 'Eternal faith' was a great disc. The next two were also great, but maybe a bit JSS-by-numbers, though in hindsight they sound pretty good. Possibly made to sound even better by the extremely weak 'Perception of Reality' - their first Soto-less CD.


Anyway, the point of this thread? I pretty much gave up on them after 'Perception of Reality' but it just happened that I picked up 'Invitation To Forever' is a 'why-not kind of trade. I put it on expecting to take it straight out and put it onto my trade list, but it's actually not too bad. The new vocalist is okay at best and the production is simple at best, but I'll be cursed if songs like 'This Story Has To Be Told' and 'Place Under The Sun' didn't really surprise me. Pretty damn good stuff. I'm only up to track 9, but so far only 'Riders On The Road' has been a truly dreadful filler and the rest is pretty decent. Not essential, but a nice return to form of sorts from these guys.


Any other thoughts on the band?


Here's their myspace page for newcomers:



Oh, and why the hell is there a logo for 'Progrock' (a distribution company?) on the back sleeve? Along with the terrible title of the CD, it scared the shit out of me and I wondered if the reason I'd never heard anything about this CD was because they'd become a prog band. Thankfully not.

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I have Taste of Heaven and it's a damn good Melodic Hard Rock disc and Jeff sounds great as always.

I've never heard or owned anything else by them. I think they released a new one with a different singer in the last couple of years.

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I have Taste of Heaven and it's a damn good Melodic Hard Rock disc and Jeff sounds great as always.

I've never heard or owned anything else by them. I think they released a new one with a different singer in the last couple of years.

They've had 2 new vocalists since JSS. The latest CD, 'Invitation to forever' was released in 2008 and is the one I'm spinning. Not too bad. But you could do without the two recent ones and just pick up the three JSS ones which are all pretty decent.

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I love what I hear on most Takara songs, new vocalist Gus Monsanto's got a fab melodic rock history if anyone cares.

Gus's vocals can be found on fabulous Brasilian melodic rock outfit Astra who's debut & only ever album is imho the best slab of mhr from that country.

If you love your mhr like 80's Dokken then you'd love Astra.


Gus also sang with another Brasilian band Angel Heart who's debut & only ever album is a pretty cool melodic rock outing.


Back to Takara, I am still undecided if I like his vocals more than SS since I've got acustomed to Jeff being the voice of Takara.

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Well......for me, "Taste Of Heaven" was awesome commercial hard rock with some symphonic influence and of course, Soto leading the way on vocals....this was from 1995.


Move forward to "Perception Of Reality" (their 5th album) and vocalist Michaal Flatters (ex-James Byrd) enters the picture.......now the irony here is there's a kind of like a mix of Talisman and Dokken on this high quality release.....go figure that one out?


I was one of those who were just addicted to Soto's voice on all those various albums. Human Clay was another project that drew my interest. Let's just say Jeff has a melodic hard rock voice among voices!!!!

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