Where have you been Lou Gramm? The heralded singer of such great classics as Juke Box Hero, Double Vision, Hot Blooded, and Midnight Blue has been stunningly silent this decade. That has now changed with the formation of The Lou Gramm Band. Teamed up with brothers Ben and Richard, The Lou Gramm Band self-titled debut disc will be released this June.
One thing that surprised me about this disc is that Lou Gramm has turned into a Christian rocker. Most of the songs center on God, the Lord, and Lou’s relationship with Him. Songs such as Willing To Forgive, So Great, Redeemer, and That’s The Way God Planned It, all focus on redemption, forgiveness, and loving the Lord. This may explain where Lou’s been for the past few years, he was off finding religion.
The disc kicks off with Baptized By Fire which sounds like a typical Lou Gramm/Foreigner rocker. The guitar work by Don Mancuso sets the tone and pace. The rock & roll vibe is definitely apparent. Lou’s voice still sounds great. Although he may not be able to scream like it was the early 80s, he can still bring the rock as a front man.
Made To Be Broken is the best song on the disc, and shows that Lou can still deliver the goods like the days of old. A touch of the Foreigner sound creeps into this song. It would fit in nicely with any of their 80s releases. The guitar work is tight, the chorus memorable, and Lou’s voice sounds like 1985 all over again.
That’s The Way God Planned It is a song that really surprised me. It plays like a church hymn with a chorus that would get a lot of airplay on the Christian Lite FM radio stations. Complete with pipe organ and preacher’s lyrics, this song is without a doubt, the biggest disappointment of the disc.
Single Vision is not a follow up to the huge Foreigner hit Double Vision. Rather, it is a song that speaks about life without God, and how the teachings of the Lord should be in the classroom and that God should still be in the pledge of allegiance. It may be slightly controversial subject matter, but it certainly is a catchy tune.
The disc closes with You Saved Me, a slow, melodic, clunker of an ending. The piano intro is a nice touch, and the guitar solo is brilliantly performed, but the vocals don’t match the music, and once again, the heavy theme of reconnecting with God paints the entire song. This is another tune that is more church hymn than rock song.
So, is The Lou Gramm Band worth the price? Well, if you’re a fan of Foreigner and miss the vocal stylings of Lou, then yes. If you’re only a casual fan, you may want to download Made To Be Broken on ITunes, and skip the rest.
Rating: Out of 10
- Baptized By Fire
- Made To Be Broken
- Willing To Forgive
- That’s The Way God Planned It
- (I Wanna) Testify
- So Great
- Single Vision
- Rattle Yer Bones
- You Saved Me
The Lou Gramm Band Is
Lou Gramm – Lead vocals
Ben Gramm – Drums
Richard Gramm – Bass
Andy Knoll – Keyboards
Don Mancuso – Guitars
Reviewed by Ryo Vie