Artist: Don Felder
Album: American Rock ‘ N Roll
Reviewer: Rod Strachan
The release of Don Felder’s new album titled “American Rock N’ Roll” his first in 7 years is long overdue. This extremely gifted guitar player and songwriter delivers another top quality album here. Combining some of the most quintessential music artists to collaborate on this album is the icing on the cake. Here is my view on the album track by track.
1. American Rock N’ Roll
The title track features Slash on lead guitar with Chad Smith and Mick Fleetwood trading the perfect beat on drums. A great play on lyrics features a number of tips of the hat to fellow artists and venues get us off to a great American Rock ‘N Roll start.
Charmed works as part two of a faultless 1-2 punch featuring Alex Lifeson on acoustic and electric guitar accents, adds a dynamic to the rhythm. This track sits solidly in its place and will no doubt earn a spot at upcoming concerts.
3. Falling In Love
A ballad of eminence potential, this unforgettable track grabs your attention from the very first chord. Steve Porcaro makes a guest appearance on keyboards adding to the magic. A song that raises the hair on the back of your neck with an arousing display of guitar solos (yes there are two here!) both acoustically and electric.
4. Hearts On Fire
This track starts off with a sleazy guitar riff and accompanying lyrics. Somewhere along the journey the song changes up and becomes a chorus driven sing a long cult favourite. Featuring David Paich on keyboards, a break down that includes perfectly orchestrated hand claps for the live stage. This one will earn an instant long term relationship with fans.
Limelight is a straight ahead rocker featuring the classic rock lead guitar infectious grooves of rock glamour couple Richie Sambora and Orianthi. Blistering dual solo from two of rock’s premiere guitar talents, a track not to be missed!
6. Little Latin Lover
A slight change of feel as this track reaches out to the Spanish guitar playing style. Little Latin Lover adds a diverse look at Don Felder’s musical ability and taste. This is a worthy addition to this already bolstering quality album.
7. Rock You
Don enlisting the help of Sammy Hagar on trading verses in this instant live anthem smash hit. Add to the mix Joe Satriani working the frets majestically and Bob Weir on backing vocals and this song is sure to Rock You tonight as the title suggests!
8. She Just Doesn’t Get It
A neat and compact pop rock style hit that Jackson Browne or Rick Springfield would love to call their own. In many ways a throwback to the 1970’s and 80’s classic sound this track features angelic bridge breakdown that has to be heard to be believed. Will be in high rotation for long time fans!
Sun is a beautifully written acoustic ballad which featuressome of the most exquisite harmony vocals ever laid on record. Originally titled “First Glimpse of My Son” and written in 1974, this somehow rejected gem by the Eagles sits very proudly on this album some 45 years later. Sun has come full circle indeed here.
10. The Way Things Have To Be (ft Leah Felder)
Perfecting the ballad with this piano driven (David Paich returning) ballad Don turns the backing vocals to his daughter Leah. Finding the right words to describe this track don’t come easy as you simply immerse yourself into the music. Leah’s vocal parts add a soft vibrant pitch contrast to her father’s soulful voice.
11. You’re My World
Ending the album “You’re My World” is a song written with beautiful harmony style lyrics. Simply put this track closes the album thoroughly in the way we want to come accustomed to from Don Felder. Please don’t make us wait 7 years for the next installment of your amazing musical journey!