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Palace: Binary Music
Palace - Binary Music Music Review

Palace: Binary Music

Melodic Hard Rock/AOR

So Michael Palace returns with his namesake project, Palace, for a second album, Binary Music. And my first question is, "What the fuck happened to his hair?" Check out his band picture from 2016. I'll wait. Don't worry the pix will open in a new window, and you can switch back to this review at anytime. Well? Damn. Was that a wig? Does he really look like the picture below. Maybe he did a stint in the Swedish Army in between albums because now his head looks like his ass. But I digress, severely and humorously (maybe not to him).

Palace Photo - Click For Larger Image


Meanwhile, Michael Palace still collects a paycheck from Frontiers Music as a contract songwriter and guitarist for the label. When not adding his talent to projects like Kryptonite or First Signal, Palace has found time to drop another album of new music for us. With no apologies, Palace delivers very Eighties classic melodic hard rock. Basically, Binary Music is musical deja vu, a ditto of what made Master Of The Universe remarkable and a pleasurable AOR listen.

Undoubtedly, Michael Palace and friends have the essentials of AOR Eighties rock nailed down: tight guitar riffs tuned to song melody and vocal harmony, an effective layer of synths for atmosphere and embellishment, strong and soaring guitar solos, and equally strong melodic vocals, all wrapped up in the rhythm and groove of AOR accessibility. What I said of the previous album remains, "Palace draws from all the right stuff that made classic Eighties rock famous. Then they simply want to tease your ears and draw you into their arena rock sound."

That's enough to say that Binary Music basically rocks from first to last. All you need is an John Hughes Eighties teen movie to play for the visual effect. To rock the arena rafters you've got Dangerous Ground, Julia, Tears Of Gaia, and Binary Music. To flick on your lighter and sing-a-long, you have the AOR groove of To Have And To Hold, Love Songs, and perhaps the most catchy and memorable song here, Nothing Personal.

Alternatively, there's Queen Of The Prom with its sugary pop rock, where the dance groove battles with the vocal arrangement for your attention. Finally, and unlike the previous recording, Palace offers a ballad with Who's Counting Time, boasting Palace's traditional and mandatory strong vocal harmony. Throughout this long player, you'll find Michael Palace in fine vocal form, sounding strong and melodic, and delivering vigorous guitar solos. Suffice to say, with Binary Music, Michael Palace once more delivers classic AOR melodic hard rock tunes like it's 1985. Recommended.

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The Bottom Line

With Binary Music, Michael Palace once more delivers classic AOR melodic hard rock tunes like it's 1985. Recommended.

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