There is a saying, “What’s old is new again.” Or maybe you prefer, “Good things never die.” Whatever you believe, it can be said also for a lot of great bands, and good music. Today, I am going to be talking about an album from 1989. It is an album, that is getting a second chance with a re-release with bonus tracks! I’m talking about the headliners of the upcoming Swedish AOR Convention. The band is Bad Habit, the album is After Hours.
Swedish AOR Convention: FACEBOOK
A Brief History
Forming in Lund, Sweden in 1986 by Hal Marabel, and former keyboard player Doc Pat Shannon, they released their first album, Young & Innocent, in 1987. Being the first band to have an independently produced music video getting airplay on Swedish national television, the band caught the music world by storm.
After releasing eight albums and numerous line-up changes, Bad Habit has returned to the AOR/Hard Rock scene after an eight year hiatus. Headlining the AOR Convention in Sweden May 31 to June 2, 2019, the fans are going to be treated to a re-release of their debut album, After Hours in which they have included two new bonus tracks and demos for their fan base. However, since that has yet to be released, let’s focus on the one that we know and love.
BAD HABIT – After Hours (The Album)
Starting off with “Living on the Edge,” you are immediately presented with a well-written, and played song that will transport you right back to the days of large hair and denim. We continue in a lighter tone with the radio friendly “Rainbow.” This beautifully written love song translates to what I am sure is many people’s story. Following that is “Don’t Stop”. With finger blistering riffs and a throbbing drum beat, you have a real rocker on your hands.
Moving onto “Play the Game,” you are given enough keys, guitars, hooks and melodies to soothe even the most savage of critics. Enough even that your mullet would grow back! The fifth track, “More than I,” brings the pace down with an absolutely beautiful song. With powerful melodic vocals and stunning music, it stays in the vein of every power ballad that ever hit the airwaves.
Flipping the record over, we get treated to “Rowena.” This for me isn’t one of the strongest tracks on the record. However, I can say the guitars alone are a pleasure to listen too! If you like more of a song that has solid drums, guitar squeals, and great hooks then “Coming Home” might be your thing. A song about returning to a loved one.
Down to the final three tracks. “Never Find Another You” starts off with stellar keyboards, and the harmonic melodies that made them a giant in their game. This would be a great one live.
Usually the second last position is considered to be the throw away track. Not this time. “Winner Takes It All,” gives you strong vocals and fantastic musicianship that make this one the exception to the rule.
A cover version of Boston’s “More Than a Feeling” closes this album out. I for one am not always a fan of people covering great classic songs. Sometimes, if it’s not broken, then don’t fix it. Bad Habit pay an unbelievably honest and true nod to this timeless classic. It’s very well done and true to its original feel and sound.
With all being said, After Hours is a great journey down memory lane. If you want a throwback to the days of some fantastic music, I suggest you pick this one up. Or better yet, grab your tickets to the Swedish AOR convention, and grab a signed copy from the band with the bonus tracks!
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Trevor “Psychoone” McDougall
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Bax Fehling – Lead vocals
Hal Marabel – Guitars, Keyboards
Sven Cirnski – Guitars
Patrik Södergren – Bass
Jaime Salazar – Drums