The Night Flight Orchestra – Aeromantic

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The 1980s love in continues with Aeromantic, the fifth album from those AOR loving Swedes The Night Flight Orchestra. As with ‘Sometimes The World Aint Enough’ two years ago you know exactly what to expect – catchy and melodramatic ditties that span everything from Magnum esque prog, Foreigner inspired soft rock and stupidly catchy pop Abba would be proud of.

‘Servants of the Air’ starts proceedings in a prog fashion, it is a forceful slice of hard rock with strong Magnum/Asia undertones and is the best track here. From here on in the name of the game is hooks, hooks and more hooks as the infectious pop rock of ‘Divinyls’ and the soaring chorus and AOR riffs of ‘This Boy’s Last Summer’ attest to. ‘Curves’ is an undeniable portion of pop, a foot tapping mixture of disco and soul that sounds like a long lost Toto track. With its wall of multi-layered synths ‘Transmissions’ is a time machine to an era of shoulder pads and ozone damaging levels of hairspray use – it would be at home on the Kung Fury soundtrack.

The record’s charms dull a bit in the second half, tracks like ‘Taurus’ and ‘Sister Mercurial’ are pleasant enough but humdrum and subdued in comparison to TNFOs usually gleeful melodies and exultant choruses. Two tracks lift things back up, the first being the title track with its jaunty piano and unabashed Queen like guitar flourishes. The second is the over six minutes of swirling REO Speedwagon-esque melodrama that is ‘Carmencita Seven’, with its frenetic momentum melting away to a calming if slightly disjointed ending. All before ending with the pleasant but bland ‘Dead of Winter’, a clash of good then forgetful that sums up the album.

Aeromantic is a happy go lucky offering of catchy pop and rock that is in love with the past and great for a party, but let down slightly by one too many unremarkable moments.

6/10

 

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