Any way you slice it, the new ALTZI album, “All Eyes On Me” is a Melodic Rock masterpiece and It will be at the top of melodic albums rankings on 2022
Swedish artist Rick Altzi is back with a solo album “All Eyes On Me”. This is a release that has taken a year and a half to germinate. Altzi started working on this album back in 2020.
He released some singles like Point Of No Return, Into The Fire, or Motherless Child, which have been appearing as a trickle in the RRSS throughout this time, some very promising previews, so we melodic rock fans were eager to know a definitive release date. Finally, a couple of weeks ago we got the news that All Eyes On Me would be released on March 25. hallelujah!
Just in case anyone is still confused, I’m going to give you a refresher on Rick Altzi for the sake of context. Rick Altzi joined the band AT VANCE as the vocalist in 2007 and has worked with many notable musicians from bands such as Helloween, Accept, King Diamond, Pain Of Salvation, etc. He is also known for his participation in Masterplan, Gathering Of Kings, or giving voice to the albums of Teutonic guitarist, Herman Frank.
“All Eyes On Me” features some of the most outstanding songwriters of the last decade, who are the raw material of any album. On this occasion we have one of the masters of musical composition and production, that is Ulrick Lonqvist or Pete Alpenborg one of those new golden boys, who also composes splendidly and on this occasion also plays keyboards and guitars. The album is mixed by Victor Ohlsson and produced by Rick Altzi and Ulrick Lönnqvist. Thomas “Plec” Johansson was in charge of the mastering.
As for the list of collaborations, you will be surprised, I’m going to make a copy and paste of the list, which is extensive and so I don’t leave anyone out.
Guest solo guitarists: Joel Hoekstra (Whitesnake, Cher), Matthias IA Eklund (Freak kitchen), Per Nilsson (Meshuggah), Olaf Lenk (AtVance), Oliver Hartmann (Avantasia), Morgan Jensen (Swedish Erotica), Victor Ohlsson (Gathering of Kings, Saffire), Magnus Karlsson (Freefall), Andy LaRocque (King Diamond), Magnus Berglund (Arctic Rain), Stefan Lindholm (Vindictiv), Eric Rauti (Dreamland).
Fourteen tracks, nothing less make up this album, we might think that in the face of such a long list in which there is a lot of filler, but it is not the case. “All Eyes On Me” hooks you directly from the first listen, and it’s not an idiom, it’s reality.
Sweet melodies, catchy choruses, and meticulous arrangements. So far it could be an ordinary album but each track has its personality, it’s not that feeling of listening to one clone after another, tracks that make you vibrate, the rest is of little use if you are not tempted to listen to the album again and again.
A collection with some superb cuts and others simply great, the best tracks are undoubtedly for me:
“Point of No Return”, a hit single that would go straight to the radio stations if it were the 80’s, that crystalline guitar line, that infectious chorus, that emphasis on the chorus, a cut that shakes of those to repeat in the player until satiety.
The only downside that I put and that has left me somewhat disappointed, is not finding in this copy, the Spanish version of Point of No return, in Spanish “Sin Vuelta Atrás”, which excites me, even more, for idiomatic reasons, so I recommend to those of you Spanish-speaking readers that you do not stop giving play to the video.
“You Don’t Believe In Love”, is a ballad as intense as it is passionate, flooding you with emotions when it reaches the core of the song. Another captivating ballad would be “Wind & the Rain”.
“Motherless Child”, is another incredible cut, with a sound inspired by the golden age of our music.
“Crash and Fall”, parade the whole set of instruments on par, in favor of building a rounded theme.
“Into The Fire”, another of my favorites of the album, dazzling guitars and the versatility of Altzi who can make his voice shine in different formats, rawer or more emotional depending on the context, with an exemplary fluency.
Other songs that also climb to the podium of honor, but for not stopping to describe them all, would be: “Run to you”, “Legacy” or “Strangers in the Real World”.
“Desire”, is a mid-tempo with a female chorus and bombastic keyboards that recreate an enveloping atmosphere.
“Hurting Kind”, is a vibrant cut, with a background melody of keyboards penetrating.
The hardest and heaviest explosion is the overwhelming “Tossin’ and Turnin'” or “Final Warning”, also in a hard line.
And it is that this album has a great virtue that the themes are exquisite, good compositions yes, that, although it seems an obviousness is what many times the releases suffer from.
“All Eyes On Me” is one of the most stimulating releases of 2022. If you are a fan of AOR and melodic rock, this album should be at your top of this year. It was a long time coming, but it was worth it.
Rick Altzi – Lead vocals and backing vocals,
Pete Alpenborg – Guitars, Keyboards
Nalle Påhlsson – Bass,
Kevin Kott – Drums
Ulrick Lönnqvist – Acoustic guitar, backing vocals
Victor Ohlsson – Additional guitars, backing vocals
Teresia Svensson – backing vocals
Kimberly Kott – backing vocals
Review by Alice