Released: 2000, Kivel Records
I grabbed this CD on the strength of the fact that the vocalist is none other than Pamela Moore. Although the name may not be familiar I’m sure you have heard her before…she played the character of Sister Mary in Queensryche’s OPERATION:MINDCRIME. On MINDCRIME she has a magnificent voice, range, power emotion she really gave it her all and added depth and substance to her character.
In retrospect I wish I had listened to this disc before taking the chance. Why? Unfortunately Ms. Moore does not display the same range, power and emotion on this disc as in her Queensryche role. Radar is essentially melodic, hard rock. Lots of keyboards! This disc is not bad per se, in fact I really enjoy this kind of music but perhaps my expectations were too high.
Radar is a 5 piece with a female lead guitarist and a guy keyboardist. There are lots of cool, big, big harmonized, back-up vocals and people going “Wooaaahh” ala Bon Jovi and Def Leppard. Musically the band is proficient, not really copying anyone else but not really breaking away from the pack. The drums and bass are just there, doing the job, nothing special. The production is crystal-clear as is always the case with these type of bands. The production safe, predictable and lots of high end no dirt anywhere!
Lyrically they scrape the bottom of the barrel. On one hand songs like “Lookin’ For Love”, “In Your Eyes” and “Rockin” have as much unique personality as a piece of white bread. However, with this type of band you don’t expect deep introspective lyrics so it is generally forgivable. The band is out to write fun rock/metal songs and that’s what they do and do it well.
I don’t know why but Radar remind me of Heart, Lee Aaron, Bad English, Giant and those kinds of bands, nothing really offensive or dangerous, just straightforward melodic rock, and believe it or not there is a large resurgence of these types of bands!
Ultimately Pamela vocals come across as squeaky and too high. She can sing…no doubt about that but I feel she is wasting her talent in a situation like this. It is strange kind of like Geoff Tate wasting his talent in Queensryche...both performing in a comfort zone well below their potential. For melodic, hard rock fans of Vixen and Lita Ford…go for it, buy this disc!! You won’t be disappointed. The rest of you might not want to make the decision of doing what I did, buying it before listening based on the strength of Pamela’s reputation. AOR fans can checkout the site http://www.aorheaven.com.
Fans of Pamela’s previous work in Queensryche can read my review of the LIVE:CRIME box-set by clicking here.