Asia – Phoenix

Asia – Phoenix / 2008 Frontiers / 12 Tracks / http://www.originalasia.com /

Asia’s music is still some of the most played on classic rock radio, but that is not because the act has been particularly active in the last few years. Rather, “Phoenix” marks the first reunion for all of the original members of the band, and the first album released by this iteration of Asia since 1983’s “Alpha”. This reunion started as a live show band in 2006, but rapidly found the love that they had for each other. This brought them into the studio, and “Phoenix” was the result of these sessions. The band starts their trip back to the top with “Never Again”, a track that feels as if it responds to the criticisms of the band – that they would play “Never Again” as a cohesive unit.

This bold statement is the first single off of the album, which has brought a renewed interest on the band – the act has actually charted already on the UK indie charts, and it should only be a short while before they chart in the US.  Despite the fact that the band has had twenty-five years apart, the compositions on “Phoenix” are solid, and oftentimes, approach the quality and timelessness of tracks like “Sole Survivor” and “Heat of the Moment”. What is perhaps the strongest facet of “Phoenix” is the ability shown by the members f the band in linking together tracks that were from twenty-five years ago and never recorded (such as “Deya”, “Over and Over” and “Alibis”. These tracks work perfectly with “I Will Remember You”, “Nothing’s Forever”, and even the aforementioned “Never Again”.

While the tracks on “Phoenix” work well in the current period, they bookend well with the work that ended “Alpha”. If you are a fan of Asia from this period, make sure to pick up this album. Hell, even if you like Asia with other iterations of the band, give “Phoenix” a listen – chances are that it will surpass the work done by the mishmash Asia work for the later eighties and nineties. Check them out when they go out on tour again – while a studio album is a good indication of their skills, it is only in a live format that they talent and ability can truly shine. Here’s to hoping that this current (original) iteration of Asia can stick with it for the years to come.

Top Tracks: Nothing’s Forever, Shadow of a Doubt

Rating: 7.0/10

Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University.

I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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