Album Review Mecca: “Everlasting” (2023)


If you are a lover of melodic and AOR, you can’t miss Mecca’s new album that arrives under the title “Everlasting”

After a seven-year break, Mecca returns to the limelight with a fourth album, named Everlasting. A long-awaited album by a great part of the classic AOR fans.

Mecca’s trajectory, apart from being synonymous with quality, goes together with the experience of always having luxury collaborators that have contributed to enlarging their work.The band emerged from the hand of Joe Vana, founder and leader of Mecca, he met Jim Peterik when he was 13 years old and would be Jim’s demo singer for some years, later they would form together the band, Project Voyager, which would finally rename Mecca.

The debut album was in 2002 and already featured David Hungate (ex-Toto), Shannon Forrest, Fergie Frederiksen (ex-Toto) and Joe on vocals, Mike Aquino on guitars, and Jimmy Nichols on keyboards.
This eponymous album is already a timeless classic of the genre. In 2011 their second release “Undeniable” (2011), was in collaboration with Swedish guitarist Christian Wolff and guitarist Tommy Denander. On III of 2016, we again highlight musicians of the caliber of Shannon Forrest (Toto), Pat Mastelotto (Mr. Mister, King Crimson), David Hungate (ex-Toto), Tony Levin (Peter Gabriel), Mike Aquino (Pride of Lions), Christian Wolff.

In Everlasting, Vanna returns to count on the composer and guitarist Tommy Denander, as he would already do in Undeniable, and some other important musicians, but already belonging to the new rock scene, like Christopher Börjars, Stefano Lionetti, Vivien Lalu, Stefano Mainini and Pete Alpenborg to the additional keyboards. The production this time is in charge of Alessandro Del Vecchio.
Mecca releases this Everlasting, reaffirming themselves as a band that oozes class, eleven tracks of great freshness encapsulated in an album that takes us back to that American AOR that some of us enjoyed so much.

And Now The Magic Is Gone opens the album, and we can already predict that the listening is going to be promising.

We continue with The Rules Of The Heart, a good theme with west coast connotations and rhythm that show a lot of taste.

I Won’t Walk Away, is the second single, a ballad with vintage-sounding synthesizers. The first single would be The Mistakes We Make, a great song with grit and vitality, an energetic hand-to-hand between father and son at the microphone, and joy.

These Times (Are For Heroes), where the guitars are the protagonists of the musical evening.
The weight of the synthesizers throughout the album is more than evident, I don’t know if they are from Alpenborg or Del Vecchio, I think both, and they are spectacular.

With Your Walls Are Crumbling Down we are left breathless before a track where Joe Vanna’s voice is captivating, reproducing the classic Mecca energy. The pre-chorus is delicious.

Everlasting and country atmosphere leads us into a ballad that makes us promise eternal love to this band and Vanna’s voice is full of feeling, for the cut that gives the title to the album.

Falling is another of the most outstanding themes, with great arrangements of choirs that make it certainly bombastic and celestial, a magnificent song.

Endless Days have an AOR aftertaste, with fantastic rhythms and pianos, the guitar solo also elevates it to another category.

Living In Fear with that sound so Toto takes us to remember why we liked this band so much.

Your Way where the guitar lengthens its initial sigh, while the guitar and piano notes are harmoniously interwoven, as in a rite that is repeated throughout the album to celebrate the communion of all the fans with the band.

This album faithfully reflects the tone of old-school AOR, extracting again the essence of these Americans in the form of a pentagram.

We will not go into comparisons with their previous works, hardly surmountable, but we will say that Everlasting is deserving, by all means, to be on the illustrious shelves of the most demanding fans of the AOR genre.

Joe Vana – Lead Vocals
Joey Vana – Lead Vocals
Sven Larsson – Guitars
Mitia Maccaferri – Bass
Alessandro Del Vecchio – Keyboards
Mirko De Maoi – Drums

Review by Alicia Albertos


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