Stormkro - Some Odd Years

EricEric USA
edited August 1 in year-1996

What we have is a Los Angeles band enormously influenced by early Styx, that's right boys and girls, we're talking pre-A&M, Wooden Nickel period instrumentally and a drumming vocalist named 'Strider' who's a dead-ringer for a young and hungry Dennis DeYoung.

Stormkro - Some Odd Years
ARTIST: Stormkro
ALBUM: Some Odd Years
LABEL: Little Blue Doctor Productions
YEAR: 1996

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA Flag
LINEUP: Strider - lead vocals, drums, percussion * John Graves - guitar, vocals * Stevie Holmes - grand piano, keyboards, synthesizers, programming, spoken word * Richard Cusato - bass, acoustic guitar * Howard Roth - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Follow Me * 02 Father Times The Man * 03 Me * 04 The Mad King * 05 Awaiting * 06 Mr. Max Webster * 07 Bantu * 08 Old Man * 09 Lovin' Evermore * 10 Saltheart Foamfollower * 11 Hile Troy * 12 Outcast Am I * 13 Circus Man

WEBLINKS: Site Link

Background

One of the better American indie discs to cross my desk in the mid-90's, I remember getting this as a promo but apparently didn't keep the bio sheet that came with it. What a scatterbrain, but a memorable release for the off-the-wall cover art which I've never been able to quite figure out? A weird collage of planets, aliens and a naked old man in a basket who looks as perplexed as I am when I see 'Some Odd Years' described as Heavy Metal or 'experimental' on collector's lists. Don't believe that for a minute.

The Songs

What we have is a Los Angeles band enormously influenced by early Styx. That's right boys and girls, we're talking pre-A&M, Wooden Nickel period instrumentally and a drumming vocalist named 'Strider' who's a dead-ringer for a young and hungry Dennis DeYoung.

The first two tracks 'Follow Me' and 'Father Times The Man' are very much in the style of 'The Serpent Is Rising', but then again so is the rest of the CD, picking up on the progressive side of Chicago's favourite sons, ignoring the James Young and John Curulewski detours and going for full-blown DeYoung styled pomp extravaganzas.

Prime stuff in 'The Mad King', the hard rocking medieval 'Mr. Max Webster' with a touch of Gryphon and the grand finale 'Circus Man' which even takes a pass at the Styx worshipping Zon. But sadly this kind of prog AOR was passe in 1996, barely visible outside the then burgeoning progressive rock underground and Stormkro were never heard from again.

In Summary

It's still easy to find a hard copy of 'Some Odd Years' and at least one blog currently has a full download available. Of course it all depends on how much you dig Styx, although considering the tired tripe the current version of the band are peddling to the graying masses, Stormkro might feel like the real deal.


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