Highway to Heartbreak

Anmeldt av Jens Nepper
(Frontiers Music, 2020)

Karakter: 5/6

STARDUST Highway to Heartbreak.jpgThe Hungarian hard rockers known as Stardust turned out to be a fucking fabulous musical encounter and one that is as uplifting to immerse oneself in as it is memorable. There is something quite inspired and invigorating about this eleven-song offering of theirs, and these guys are obviously a talented bunch. In fact, I was somewhat surprised by the fact that this is the group's debut album in that it sounds as if it was crafted by seasoned veterans who had played together for ages, so kudos to Stardust for that. The record inhabits some of the best traits and characteristics of 80s-inspired AOR and melodic hard rock but things sound neither dated nor old hat as such; there is a timeless quality to what Stardust dabble in. How the fuck can one resist such ridiculously catchy and exciting tunes as "Bullet to My Heart", "Shout It Out", and "Eye to Eye" with their ear-worming riffs and pop-like qualities?! My only complaint is the ballad titled "Perfect Obsession", which is as derivative and uninteresting as they come, but other than that this LP is a strong one and the majority of tracks are killer.

There is a sense of spirit and vigor to these compositions and "Highway to Heartbreak" is loaded with infectious hooks, superb vocal melodies, and crunch. Despite its AOR/melodic hard rock leanings it is far from polished or sterile, which is something that many similar acts out there could learn from. Rather, this disc possesses a subtle touch of rawness and a certain warmth that are incredibly charming and instantly appealing. It might not be original or innovative, but it is definitely worth checking out if you want passionate songs with huge choruses and plenty of atmosphere to them.


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