Hot off the Press

Faith Circus | Turn Up The Band

by Mark Allen
– Senior Columnist —

Faith Circus Turn Up The BandIf melodic hard rock is your religion, then you’ll want to make Faith Circus part of your creed. Hot damn if some of the songs on this new album aren’t good enough to put you on your knees thanking God, Jesus, or your deity of choice. Granted, the devil may have stuck his nasty little sulfuric fingers into the recording process every once in awhile because a few tracks slump a bit, but by and large this is a high quality release that gives melodic rock fans exactly what they crave.

First and foremost are the impressive vocals of Marc Farrano. A bad vocalist can break a good band and a good vocalist can elevate a bad band, so just imagine how sweet it is to hear a good vocalist front a good band. Actually, there’s no need to use your imagination … just go pick up a copy of this album and forgo imaginary in favor of sonic reality.

Faith Circus describe their sound as a hybrid of KISS, Van Halen, Def Leppard, Bon Jovi, and Journey. As comparisons go, those aren’t too shabby. You’ll hear lots of cool melodies, some really good hooks, plenty of six-string sizzle, pounding rhythms, and the mandatory inclusion of smooth, layered harmonies. The production is slick and polished—perhaps just a touch TOO polished—so if you’re looking for grit, go buy some sandpaper. Faith Circus is all about melody, not metal. Not a criticism, merely an observation.

Passion is an oft-ignored component in today’s rock ‘n’ roll climate, but you can hear it loud and clear in the music of Faith Circus. The band loves what they are doing and are having loads of fun doing it and that permeates their songs for the listener to experience. When a band is obviously having this much fun, you just naturally want to go along for the ride. Which is easy to do, thanks to some instantly-catchy sing-along tracks.

“Turn Up the Band” gets to cranking with a pure ‘80s vibe and those all-important, much-beloved gang vocals. Better yet is the anthemic, power chord abusing “Born With the Power,” with classic hair-metal lyrics such as “You were born with the power / Yeah, you were born with the power to rock.” KISS would approve and you will too. Proving they are not all rock all the time, the band delivers two quality ballads in “Tears You’ve Never Cried” and “Into Your Heart,” testimony to their ability to tug the heartstrings and get the lighters (or cell phones, if you’re one of the cool kids) in the air.

Faith Circus have experienced break ups, member changes, and the usual assortment of bad luck than can befall a band along the way. But rather than lay in the dust and moan like a kicked puppy, they have used the pressure to forge a fresh start. The band now calls MelodicRock Records home and Turn Up the Band should find its way into your home. Don’t waver, don’t hesitate – just have faith that you need this album.

Genre: Melodic Hard Rock

Marc Farrano (vocals)
H.K. Rein (guitars)
Christer Ottesen (bass)
Baard Nordvik (drums)

Track Listing
1. Restless Heart
2. Turn Up the Band
3. Inside the Circus
4. Born With the Power
5. Tears You’ve Never Cried
6. Love Me Dry
7. Sunshine Radio
8. Firesign
9. Into Your Heart
10. Follow My Voice

Label: MelodicRock Records


Hardrock Haven rating: 8/10