DIG IN DEEP
Tyketto is one of those bands from the 80s that I always liked, but really never caught on very much. They had a couple hits that were cool, but even their best songs like "Forever Young" and "Seasons" were marginally successful at best. The band was a highlight reel for former Waysted vocalist Danny Vaughn, who shined and ended up building a solid solo career outside of Tyketto in the AOR world when Tyketto disbanded.
They are back with the original lineup I'm told, and interestingly, DIG IN DEEP is exactly what they've always produced. It's an album full of solid tunes that aren't especially memorable, yet feature some great playing and even better vocals. Simply put, Vaughn is a great singer. His voice is pretty much a mish mosh of Survivor vocalist Jimi Jamison and Thunder lead man Danny Bowes. He sounds great as always here on songs like the mid-tempo, yet punchy "Here's Hoping It Hurts". The thing to remember though is that while Vaughn is a great singer, he never has a distinctive moment like either Bowes or Jamison do to separate their vocals from the music. Vaughn is certainly clear vocally and clean throughout, but there's no memorable or emotional moment where you latch onto any song on the disc. Songs like "Love To Love" are nice songs, but really fall into the unmemorable category five minutes after listening to them.
Sadly, that's the same for the rest of the band as well. Brooke St. James is a solid guitar player in both the acoustic and electric setting, but needs more flash here to make these songs more interesting. He sounds really good on "Battle Lines", wherein he showcases both styles flawlessly. That said though, there's nothing of note or flash to point to here where you think, "man, that riff really made that song great." The same can be said for the drums and bass as well. Michael Clayton and Jimi Kennedy make up a solid enough rhythm section, but offer up nothing remotely flashy to really lure the listener into any of the songs. In short, DIG IN DEEP is a pretty safe release from a band that's not really known for challenging anything from an interesting standpoint anyway.
PITRIFF RATING - 72/100 - Tyketto is one of those bands I always wanted to like, but who just never gave me a lot to latch onto. "Forever Young" and "Seasons" are two great songs, and the rest of their catalog is fairly uninteresting. There's nothing especially wrong with DIG IN DEEP, but there's not any reason to remember it either. It's just there. If you like AOR music exclusively, then you will probably dig this a lot. If not, you won't remember it past this review.