Link - 1983 Temptation

richardbrichardb Poole, Dorset

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ARTIST: Link
ALBUM: Temptation
LABEL: Our Gang
SERIAL: OGG 60001
YEAR: 1983

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: image

LINEUP: Paul Christensen - lead vocals, sax, keyboards * Kent Mazey - vocals, bass * Greg Orr - vocals, guitar * Burt Scheel - drums, percussion * Kevin Macey - vocals, keyboards

TRACK LISTING: 01 Hang On * 02 Temptation * 03 Gone Are The Times * 04 Shadow Of Myself * 05 Can't Get Enough * 06 Long Live Rock

Background

According to drummer Burt Scheel, Cleveland based Link were originally devised as a 'sci-fi concept band called Link Laser with all the usual accoutrements you would expect such as a 10 foot Robot on stage, space age outfits etc.

I'm not sure health and safety procedures would condone such antics today, but in any event, on the advice of record company scouts (as opposed to Star Trek fans) the band wisely decided to tone down their image concentrating on the music instead and ditching 'laser' from their moniker in the process.

Through a heavy touring schedule, Link managed to secure a loyal following in the Mid West off the back of their first album 'All For You' which included a memorable cover of David Bowie's 'Space Oddity' and garnished a considerable amount of radio airplay.

Unfortunately the record company deemed their follow up album 'Maximum Air' too left field, this perhaps inevitably led to a line up change and lead vocalist Paul Christensen and guitarist Greg Orr were drafted in to replace Ron Marrone and Roger Hatfield who appeared on the first album.

The Songs

As you'd expect with four vocalists and two keyboard players in the line-up Link have a penchant for symphonic AOR, laced with multi-part harmonies and fiery guitar work.

The production is very good for an independent release and this together with all of the above, dare I say it, makes for a tempting proposition indeed.

The aural bombast commences with 'Hang On' plenty of layered keyboards, biting guitar and a nice line in vocal harmonies.

The swirling keyboard intro lands us smack bang in pomp territory with the majestic strutting title cut, the tempo then eases for 'Gone Are The Times'. Rest assured though, there's plenty of luscious keys, vocal harmonies and biting guitar power chords to keep the average pomp fan in a state of delirium. Side two is even better.

'Shadow Of Myself' is suitably melodramatic all heavy duty guitar riffing, garnished with neat percussive arrangements and keyboard lines.

'Can't Get Enough' for some reason reminds me of Streek, though this may be down to Paul Christensen's saxophone solo in the mid section.

Ending the album with a song called 'Long Live Rock' and with lyrics such as 'The sound of guitars ring out in the night with people rocking until the light of day' and 'Long live rock all systems go!', you just know matters will end on a high note. The overblown nature of the song and shredding guitar solo merely underline it's status as a minor AOR classic.

In Summary

'Temptation' is regarded by some, as one of the greatest 'undiscovered' AOR releases of all time an opinion which I endorse having listened to (and endured in some cases!) many private label AOR releases over the years.

I understand there was a spate of activity a few years ago and talk of a new album together with a CD release of 'Maximum Air'. Unfortunately nothing appears to have come to fruition and it's subsequently been all quiet on the (mid) western front.

A shame really because after 25 years 'Temptation' still stands up well against other major label releases of the same period.

It also has sufficient class to appeal to a wider audience other than AOR trainspotters, especially when you consider the paucity of decent melodic rock bands in the current scene..


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