Graham Bonnet resumes his most personal project and does so with a remarkable new album entitled “Day Out In Nowhere”
Graham Bonnet’s career has always been associated with some of the most legendary bands in the history of rock, his extensive career places him in formations such as Rainbow, Impelliteri, Michael Schenker, and Alcatrazz. And he is one of the most iconic voices of the hard and heavy scene for decades. Undoubtedly his voice still treasures that magic that captivated us in his day when we discovered him, as it was in my case, with that “Since You Been Gone” by Rainbow.
Possessing a characteristic image, with a posh boy haircut, aviator glasses and suits or shirts with ties, he was the antithesis in terms of clothing to any rock star of the time, but he was “god” singing… and of course, there was nothing to object about his attire.
After his time with Rainbow replacing Ronnie James Dio, he would meet Michael Schenker with whom he would collaborate both in MSG and in his project “Michael Schenker Fest”, he also played in the ranks of Impelliteri and alternated his solo career with Alcatrazz.
In 2020 he broke up with Alcatrazz, and after some controversy on both sides, Bonnet decided to continue with the legacy of Alcatrazz and the name, giving rise to two groups of the same name. During this impasse, Bonnet is forging what will be his third album with The Graham Bonnet Band, counting again on two of the initial members of his first albums, Beth-Ami Heavenstone on bass and Conrado Pesinato on guitar, these two musicians will also perform the tasks of production of this album.
The rest of the band is made up of keyboardist Alessandro Bertoni and drummer Shane Gaalaas (Michael Schenker, B’z).
And as usual, in the last years, we have had stellar guests such as Jeff Loomis (Arch Enemy, Nevermore), John Tempesta (The Cult, White Zombie), Mike Tempesta (Powerman 5000), Roy Z (Halford, Bruce Dickinson) and the legendary keyboardist Don Airey (Deep Purple, Rainbow).
“Day Out In Nowhere” is their third release that chooses the same musical direction as the previous two, “The Book” and “Meanwhile, Back In The Garage”. We will find obvious influences from the bands in which he has participated, such as Rainbow or Alcatrazz, but giving a fresher character to the songs.
The Graham Bonnet Band represents the kind of music he would have wanted for Alcatrazz, less artifice with the guitar and songs of greater consistency, combining all this with lyrics inspired by issues that concern our protagonist.
After this prologue, we can foresee that Day Out In Nowhere is a classic hard rock album with a brilliant production. Graham Bonnet is accompanied by a very competent band where very good chemistry between them is evident.
Opening Imposter, the first single of the album, classic rock in its purest essence, even Rainbow comes to mind for a moment.
Twelve Steps To Heaven combines classic and modern, Bonnet’s voice still feels powerful, and Pessinato does spectacular guitar work.
Brave New World with harmonies a la Since you been gone, choruses a la Alcatrazz, and Roy Z’s guitar solo a la Steve Vai.
Uncle John is a strong song, with dark lyrics, fantastic keyboard melodies, and an impressive solo by Conrado Pessinato, a very good guitarist.
Day Out In Nowhere is perhaps the one that is closer to melodic rock with acoustics that sweetens the composition.
The Sky Is Alive pure Alcatrazz style, all speed, and a John Lord-like keyboard solo.
David’s Mom with a lot of grooves, super hooky, here the bass of Beth-Ami Heavenstone has a hypnotizing rhythm and the punch of Shane Gaalaas, of vertigo.
When We’re Asleep with the Tempesta brothers, Mike and John, as you know John is the current drummer of The Cult.
It’s Just A Frickin’ Song another retro cut, where the good Don Airey plays the Hammond dueling with the rhythm section, pure magic.
Jester another energizing piece with Jeff Loomis on guitar and Kyle Hughes on drums.
Suzy (Orchestra) is the conclusion of the album, a strange theme that stands out from the rest, an orchestrated piece as if it were a movie soundtrack, where Bonnet shows his different registers from the low to the highs.
The foundations of Bonnet’s career were laid in the 70s and 80s, but his incombustible and powerful voice and his vision of approaching old school influences with renewed airs make this album a work that will convince his most loyal fans and attract those who never listened to the master in past decades.
Review by Alicia Albertos