Power Play

April Wine

Aquarius Records, 1982




With the hockey playoffs in full swing (GO CHICAGO WOLVES!), and an album title such as Power Play (that's a hockey term where a team has a penalty), I felt it best to review an album by a band from a country where hockey is best known for: Canada. April Wine's 1982 release, Power Play, defines this band at 1980's pop/rock finest.

"Anything You Want, You Got It" starts out the album, and it is a true rocker. This song has the hard rock style of Night Ranger, and the hard rock guitar of Ted Nugent. "Enough Is Enough" has a typical 1980s rock style, yet it has a pop sound to it. The echo effects in the vocals is almost like listening to the rock band Poison, and the vocal harmonies is similar to Rick Springfield.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

"If You See Kay" is a medium-paced song, with chorus vocals that are truly remarkable. Again, this is another pop/rock sounding tune. "What If We Fall In Love" is more of a romantic pop song where it's not hard rock, yet it settles down the pace for the listening ear. "Waiting On A Miracle" is another rock song in the style of another popular 1980s band, Survivor, but more like (again) Night Ranger.

"Doin' It Right" features real pleasing harmony vocals where the music of the band stops midway as the band sings accapella, as Bryan Adams did in "The Kids Wanna Rock." (Although Adams didn't have any other vocalists singing with him.) And this song rocks just as good as Adams, who is also from Canada. "Ain't Got Your Love" is another good rocker in the style of Night Ranger and Damn Yankees, likewise "Blood Money."

Most of the songs (seven out of 10) on the album were written by lead vocalist/guitarist Myles Goodwin. But the band does a cover version of The Beatles' "Tell Me Why," which is completely different than the original. It is much slower; it's a ballad, and it's in the same (slow) musical style of Mott The Hoople's "All The Young Dudes." This version is very impressive. Lastly, "Runners In The Night" is another rocker, where the guitars are similar to Robin Trower.

There are many comparisons in musical groups towards April Wine. They rock like Night Ranger, Damn Yankees, Survivor, Poison, Robin Trower, and Bryan Adams. Their lead singer's voice has a slight resemblance to The Babys/Bad English's John Waite.

April Wine's original albums are hard to find on CD. There are a few re-issued here in the U.S., although their entire catalog is available as Canadian imports. Most people are familiar with the band's hit "Just Between You And Me" from their 1981 album, The Nature Of The Beast. This song is a slow ballad, as many people may not realize that April Wine can rock just as good as any other 1980s rock band.

If you happen to find any original album by April Wine, you won't be disappointed. Their music will be appealing to those enjoy rock and roll and/or hard rock. Not only can they rock, but their harmony vocals and guitars are incredible.

Rating: B+

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© 1998 Eric E5S16 and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Aquarius Records, and is used for informational purposes only.