Soul SirkUS Records
Neal Schon’s new supergroup side project has an interesting background. Originally called PlanetUS and featuring Sammy Hagar, the line-up changed frequently, until Schon (of Journey fame) settled on Jeff Scott Soto as lead singer and the new name of Soul SirkUS. Industry heavy hitters Deen Castronovo on drums and Marco Mendoza on bass complete the line-up, and what results is an impressive album of AOR anthems.
As he showcased in the movie Rock Star, Soto is a top class rock vocalist, and his powerful voice and Schon’s driving riffs dominate World Play. The epic and atmospheric “Another World” contrasts nicely with the pounding rock of “New Position,” a song that sounds like something from Hagar-era Van Halen. Hagar didn’t write it, but he did co-write “Peephole,” a monster of a rocker on which Schon demonstrates why he is one of the best rock guitarists in the world. The ballad “Coming Home” sounds suspiciously like a Journey b-side, but it provides a welcomed change of pace.
Overall, World Play is everything to be expected from a band boasting such talents. With Velvet Revolver and Soul SirkUS, rock fans are certainly spoilt for choice as far as all-star bands go.
Soul SirkUS: www.soulsirkus.com