Birkenhead based melodic rockers Fugitive are certainly causing a bit of a stir since founding members Michael Angel on lead vocals/guitar and Ranko ‘Chip’ Veltro on lead guitar decided to break free from their shackles and reform the band with the new blood of Al Catraz (boom-tish) on drums and David Steele on bass guitar and backing vocals.

Currently riding high at #5 in the Amazon Rock Chart with their latest single ‘Slave To Love’, one of fourteen choice cuts from soon to be released album ‘The Awakening’, fittingly titled to describe their present state and they will be causing a riot for an album launch party at the Swinging Arm in Birkenhead on April 4th 2019. On approaching this review I thought the amount of songs here may overstay their welcome but after a couple of spins I could not have been more wrong as opening track ‘Serendipity’ hits hard and heavy, all drum dominated AOR topped off with gritty vocals and fiery lead guitar licks. Other highlights are the anthemic vibes running through ‘Light It Up’, a live favourite of mine. The aforementioned ‘Slave To Love’ sounds like it’s spent all day in the gym as the adrenaline flows freely through headbanging riffs and a chest beating lead vocal. ‘All Fired Up’ keeps the momentum going with some lung busting choruses.

A slight departure from the bombast sees ‘Two Hearts’ pump along on wistful power balladry and they keep this vibe with follower ‘Message’, Nightranger like in its twin guitar heavy bravado and has rock radio airplay appeal for sure. ‘Standing at the Edge’ puffs out its chest for some stadium rock balladry at its finest as ‘Moonshine’ picks up the pace as it extols the avoidance of alcohol. The heart strings are tugged once more during ‘Resurrection’, a tale of love lost topped off by a virtuoso lead break midway. The album heads out on the highway with two hard hitters as ‘Payback’ cranks up the volume with the riffs fracking their way to the Earth’s core and one last moment of calm sees ‘Awaecan’ flow along on an emotional lyric portraying the struggle of the band coming back to life.