Sometimes a trip to the record store can turn up a gem, like Saturday’s trip. Out of nowhere, I found a brand-new release from 80’s rockers Honeymoon Suite, called Hands Up.
From Powertrain Records, this release was a breath of fresh air. The band, which consists of lead singer Johnnie Dee, the only original remaining member, also has long-time members Derry Grehan on guitar, Dave Betts on drums, bassist Gary Lalonde, and Peter Nunn keyboards. Their last release was in 2008 titled Clifton Hill on Frontiers Records. Honestly, I had no idea this album even existed, so when I saw it I immediately bought it and haven’t stopped listening.
Seven new tracks are on this, as well as two classic songs, and was recorded live in Toronto in 2015. The title track starts things off and it’s 1988 all over again for me. It’s melodic and very well written. For those who don’t know, these Canadian rockers cracked the Top 40 back in the day with “Feel It Again” in 1986 and their most well-known song “New Girl Now” in 1984.
“Never Was a Forever,” song three, is my favorite on this album. It’s pure melodic-rock at its best with incredible guitar playing by Grehan. These guys haven’t lost a thing. “1986,” is just how it sounds, like it was written in 1986. Only bands from this era can do this type of music now. If you didn’t live it or listen to these guys back then you won’t understand. If you would like to try, then you should find this album and learn the hard way; by listening to this great band put out some great music.
The last two songs performed live are “Burning in Love” and “New Girl Now;” which, were just fantastic to listen to again in 2017. Honeymoon Suite still tours and have a number of dates in Canada, along with a trip to the UK in October of this year.
Go and get this album. If your local store doesn’t have it, check out their Facebook page, where you can find a link to order it.