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Robin McAuley: Standing On The Edge
Robin McAuley - Standing On The Edge Album Art

Robin McAuley: Standing On The Edge

Melodic Hard Rock/AOR
4.5/5.0

Talent is not learned, its born. Experience is everything. And age is just number. Vocal troubadour Robin McAuley, recently turned 68, is no stranger to fans of melodic hard rock and metal. He first rose to fame when recruited by guitar icon Michael Schenker for his Michael Schenker Group. This pairing quickly morphed into MSG: the McAuley Schenker Group, releasing three albums until disbanding in 1992. (McAuley got married.) He dropped his first solo album, Business As Usual in 1999. But after this his career became much more quiet. Then he became a vocalist for Raiding The Rock Vault, a premier musical jukebox stage show in Sin City. A few quick years later McAuley reconnected with old friend Schenker for his Michael Schenker Fest and two albums. In 2020 Frontiers Music dropped him in super group Black Swan with guitarist Reb Beach (Winger, Whitesnake), bassist Jeff Pilson (Foreigner, The End Machine, ex-Dokken), and drummer Matt Starr (Ace Frehley, Mr. Big). Now, after 22 years, the versatile vocalist returns with his second solo effort, Standing On The Edge, hosted by Frontiers Records. The album reunites McAuley with former Grand Prix bandmate Phil Lanzon (currently longtime Uriah Heep keyboardist).

Robin McAuley - Click For Larger Image

Robin McAuley

With this new album McAuley has never sounded better. His voice is clean and melodic, easily carrying the melody of a song, and there's never any strain or suffering in his presentation. Even better the songs are tuned to his vocal talent and timbre in the proper context. That proper context is simply AOR-driven melodic hard rock which is large and long on song melody, guitar harmony, rock rhythm and groove, big refrains, and rising guitar solos. As for the latter, my only hope would have been a guest appearance by Schenker himself. Alas, we do have Howard Leese of Bad Company and Heart fame on Supposed To Do Now and Tommy Denander on Do You Remember and Chosen Few.

Expanding briefly on a few more songs, with Do You Remember and Say Goodbye you have similarities and contrast. Both songs offer light guitar work to start, but then both move in different directions. The former to more AOR melodic rock; the latter heavier with stronger riffs and bass line. Alternatively, Like A Ghost and Running Out Of Time are more straight up melodic hard rock. The Running Out Of Time is fast an heavy with strong guitar lines. Like A Ghost is expansive, heavy, and dense and showcases Lanzon's Hammond. Your requisite ballad comes with Run Away driven by synths, acoustic guitar, and voice. Simply said, Robin McAuley's Standing On The Edge displays the strength of his vocal talent in the context of his best genre, AOR melodic hard rock. Easily recommended.




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The Take Away

Robin McAuley's Standing On The Edge displays the strength of his vocal talent in the context of his best genre, AOR melodic hard rock. Easily recommended.

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