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Moonland (featuring Lenna Kuurmaa) - 'S/T'

posted 14 Oct 2014, 13:51 by Paul Woodward

(Frontiers Records)

Review by Woody

I have to admit I was very excited about the Moonland project when Frontiers announced it as I’m a big fan of vocalist Lenna Kuurmaa and her time with pop rockers Vanilla Ninja. Moonland sees Lenna work very closely with producer Alessandro Del Vecchio and it is very much an album of pure AOR. Del Vecchio also adds a few of his own songs to the mix as well as some truly amazing piano and keyboard moments, a truly impressive performance from the ever reliable keyboardist.

Obviously given my musical taste hearing Lenna sing on a pure AOR album was the stuff dreams are made of. Although I’m already a fan I think these songs and style really showcase what a truly awesome vocalist she is as these songs stretch and expose her range far more than I’ve heard previously. I’m totally in awe of her performances on this album she has such a warm and extremely emotive voice that frequently gives me tingles, she puts me a little in mind of Sue Willets of Dante Fox at times for her passionate delivery and also having a powerful voice that can also create some truly beautiful melodies with ease.

For me this is an almost perfect slice of pure AOR, all the songs have lush arrangements and beautiful musical landscapes which complement Lenna’s heartfelt vocals perfectly. I fell in love with this album instantly and I think a lot of that is down to the emotional connection I quickly made with the songs and Lenna’s beautiful voice. Sometimes projects can see singers been detached from the lyric’s and the emotional drive of the melodies of songs they haven’t written, but Lenna totally gets what this album is about and seemingly pours her heart and soul into every word and melody.

There is a very warm and beautiful feel to this album as a whole and the emotive depth just makes it tick all the right boxes for me. There are lots of unforgettable vocal melodies, pumping keyboards, driven hook fuelled guitars that combine to make some really intense and passionate tunes that make a lasting impression. Every track has something that makes it stand out clearly in my mind; I love the subtle and delicate nature that ‘Open Your Heart’ makes me feel for it. I love the energy and immediate impact of rockers like ‘Crime Of Love’ and ‘Poison Angel’. I also just love immersing myself into the emotional drive of the unforgettable ‘Out Of Reach’, ‘Over Me’ and the ballad ‘Live and Let Go’ which just sees Lenna oozing raw emotion.

If you’re a fan of traditional sounding pure AOR you should love this, especially if bands like Dante Fox and Romeo’s Daughter float your boat! Here’s hoping Lenna continues to make rock music following this stellar performance that should make her deservedly a new star in the world of AOR. I love this album, you will too.

Track Listing: Heaven Is To Be Close To You / Open Your Heart / Crime Of Love / Poison Angel / When Love Is Gone / Out Of Reach / Live and Let Go / Cold As Ice / Over Me / Heart Made Of Steel / Look At Us Now / Another Day In Paradise / Live and Let Go (acoustic)

Album Rating: 10/10

Woody’s Essential Track: Over Me