RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

Starship Featuring Mickey Thomas – Loveless Fascination
Loud & Proud Records

http://www.loudandproudrecords.com/artists/starship/

Rating: B

Mickey Thomas is a class act and a wildly talented vocalist.  He first burst onto the scene with Elvin Bishop, singing lead vocals on the smash hit “Fooled Around and Fell in Love.”  Towards the end of the Seventies, a solo career was put on hold when he joined fellow Bay Area rockers Jefferson Starship. The band had huge hits sung by Mickey including “Find Your Way Back” and “Jane.”  In the 1980s, Mickey fronted the band Starship who flew up the charts with “Sara,” “We Built This City” and “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now.”  Then…Starship became Starship featuring Mickey Thomas and the band hit the road on a pretty much non-stop twenty year tour. 

Now, two decades since the last Starship album dropped, the band, on September 17, 2013, will release a new album titled Loveless Fascination.   Fans of Starship and Thomas will be thrilled to hear that the release was worth the 20 year wait. 

The album contains the classy pop oriented sounds that any diehard Starship fan loves to hear, yet, for the fans of the more rock oriented Thomas era of Jefferson Starship, there are plenty of rockers as well.  This mix of styles makes the album a true album; one best enjoyed by jamming out all of the tracks in one sitting.  In this day and age of download and delete music, Thomas and Company has succeeded in making real music! 

The album’s single, “It’s Not the Same as Love” will have 40 and 50 year olds back in 1985, dancing the night away, as this song, if it were released then, would have been a smash FM radio hit.  Will it today?  Likely not, due to the craziness of the industry, but that should not stop fans of Starship’s magic blend of AOR rock from checking out the album.  After all, good music is good music no matter what decade it was released and this is good music!   The title track has a guitar rhythm that rocks, while the song “Technicolor Black and White” is a throwback to the Jefferson Starship days.

Thomas has amazing vocal ability and is very excited at the prospect of adding some new songs to the set.  “In some ways, this feels like a ‘70s record. It’s organic, and there’s a real edge to it,” he says.  “The overall theme of the record has to do with relationships that don’t work out,” he laughs. “But that’s OK. The Eagles made quite a career out of that.”

It is refreshing to hear an artist find that magical balance of sticking to his sound, yet pushing it forward and creating something fresh and new.  Thomas had help in crafting the record, however, as it was Jeff Pilson, currently a member of the band Foreigner, who was beside him every step of the way, producing the album and helping write the songs.  They made a formidable team, as everything on the album, the songs, the lyrics, the vocals, even the artwork, which was created by album cover artist IOANNIS, is top notch.

I can’t resist ending this review by saying the obvious, they built the dream together and nothings gonna stop them now!  Oh, that was just shameful of me, but, in all seriousness, there is some truth to the statement, as Starship featuring Mickey Thomas is back and have released a very solid album.    

TRACKLISTING
01. It’s Not The Same As Love
02. How Do You Sleep
03. Loveless Fascination
04. What Did I Ever Do
05. Technicolor Black And White
06. Where Did We Go Wrong
07. Nothing Can Keep Me From You
08. How Will I Get By
09. You Never Know
10. You Deny Me

By Jeb Wright

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