Lane, Lana - Secrets of Astrology

Year of Release: 2000
Label: Think Tank Media
Catalog Number: TTMD-1047
Format: CD
Total Time: 73:18:00

Many out there are quick to think "queen of symphonic rock" when the name Lana Lane is mentioned. Not being familiar with her previous solo work, I was in eager anticipation of listening to the singer's latest album, Secrets Of Astrology, expecting a regal gala of adventurous progressive rock adorned with beautiful female vocals. I didn't get exactly what I expected, but I certainly wasn't disappointed by what turned out to be a highly enjoyable record. In other words, I fortunately do not get to write down something like "goes to show what expectations are worth," but more like "ok, so I didn't get what I thought I would, but this will definitely do." Because, ladies and gentleman, it does. With husband Erik Norlander at the helm of music, production, and keyboards, the diva of progressive rock takes to the forefront with her clear, resounding vocals, somewhat reminiscent of Heart's Ann Wilson. Forget the sweetness of an Anneke van Giersbergen or the angry vocals of a Wendy O Williams; Lana Lane is a singer whose vocal approach is big, strong, and to the point, without ever forsaking finesse when necessary. And in order to back her up are thirteen catchy, polished, well-balanced songs that often walk the fine line between progressive metal and hard rock with a progressive edge. Symphonic rock? Not quite.

To be completely sincere, Secrets of Astrology is far from being anything new or unexpected. Instead, the album chooses to follow paths that have been tread before, take the best out of such paths, and turn the resources into the best product possible. It is thus that an AOR track like "Raining" sounds like a definitive hit single, a string section-adorned "The Bell" is evocatively sweet, and a heavy "Tarot" hits hard like an Arjen Anthony Lucassen song. (Hey, guess what? It actually IS an Arjen Anthony Lucassen song!)

Some albums have their main strength is creating something new, while others rely on taking something that has already been done and improving upon it. Secrets Of Astrology is, without a doubt, part of the latter category, and it certainly passes the test. For crisp production, a huge sound, well-written songs, and a healthy level of commercial accessibility that translates into undeniable catchiness, you simply can't go wrong with this one.

Similar artists: Erik Norlander, Ayreon, Heart

Astrology Prelude (3:59) / Secrets Of Astrology (8:33) / Alexandria (5:16) / Raining (6:17) / The Bell (5:16) / Speed Of Sound (5:24) / Under The Sun (4:43) / Tarot (4:47) / Asherah (6:52) / Guardian Angel (6:41) / Long Winter Dreams (5:51) / Astrology Postlude (3:31) / Bonus track for Japan only: Romeo And Juliet (5:57)

Erik Norlander - keyboards, percussion
Lana Lane - vocals

Guest musicians:

Arjen Anthony Lucassen - guitars, bass, mellotron
Tony Franklin - bass
Ed Warby - drums
David Victor - guitars

Love Is An Illusion (1995)
Curious Goods (1996/2002)
Garden Of The Moon (1998/2002)
Echoes From The Garden (1998)
Live In Japan (1998)
Love Is An Illusion 1998 Version (1998)
Ballad Collection (1998)
Acoustic Live in Tokyo (1999) (promotional release only)
Queen Of The Ocean (1999)
Echoes From The Ocean (1999)
Secrets Of Astrology (2000)
Ballad Collection (2000)
Project Shangra-La (2002)
Covers Collection (2002/2003)
Lana Lane and Erik Norlander - European Tour 2003 Souvenir CD (2003)
Winter Sessions (2003)
Return To Japan (2004)
Lady Macbeth (2005)
Gemini (2006)
Red Planet Boulevard (2007)
The Best Of Lana Lane 2000-2008 (2008)

Storybook - Tales From Europe And Japan (2004) (DVD)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin US

Added: November 17th 2002
Reviewer: Marcelo Silveyra
Artist website:
Hits: 518
Language: english


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