Some things will never change and we are extremely happy for this. Take for instance FM; a band that has never failed to deliver the goods throughout the years with a name being synonymous with class and quality. Quite honestly, FM makes you wonder how they manage to retain such a qualitative compositional level after all these years. Yes, it goes without saying that their first couple of offerings in the 80s remain classics but still it’s a wonder that FM keep on releasing so many great albums.
Once again, the first thing that you notice even upon the first sheer listening session of “Thirteen” is the fact that Steve Overland remains one of the greatest singers out there with a voice that is hauntingly reminiscent of the glory 80s days. This man is capable of uplifting even a mediocre song –not that “Thirteen” includes any such moments- and in my book he is a criminally underrated singer/performer. “Thirteen” carries on exactly where the two previous records stopped and I gotta say that there is a clear evolution at the songwriting department. The opening “Shakin’ The Tree” is phenomenal and I must say that it may remind to some of you out there something of the aura of “Indiscreet”. The follow-up “Waiting On Love” is equally impressive with its trademark FM stamp all over it while the ever present bluesy elements are more evident on “Love is War” and “Long Way Home”.
I’d say that “Thirteen” is a serious contender for the best melodic rock album of 2022. Personally, I’d have loved to listen to yet another song in the vein of “Broken” and “Black Magic” (just to name a couple of the recent past) but even so, “Thirteen” is flawless, sensational, impressive!
Highlight: The album is dedicated to the memory of live agent Steve Strange who passed untimely in September of 2021.