Wild Rose

00.30

MELODIC NET

Wild Rose is a new AOR hope from Greece. Half Past Midnight is their debut album and it’s a fantastic album filled with pure 80s keyboard driven AOR with stunning melodies and hooklines. These guys are heavenly influenced by some classic bands such as Strangeways, Outside Edge, FM and Passion Street. Yes, these guys sound like they are from the UK because their sound reminds a lot of those mentioned bands. Singer George Bitzios has a voice that reminds of Tom Farmer of Outside Edge and he sings very good.

There are eleven tracks on the album and you won’t find a single filler on it, just AOR by numbers. Too Late is a great mid-tempo rocker with layers of keyboards and a catchy chorus. It’s All About Love is a lovely piece of work with wonderful keyboards and the melodies are just perfect, reminds little of Houston. Another Shot is AOR-heaven with big hooklines and an awesome chorus with superb harmonies, makes me think of Roxus. Edge Of Your Dreams is a fantastic pompish AOR-rocker.

The keyboards on Come Back is nothing but stunning and the chorus is a winner with a Haywire resemblances. These guys have done a marvelous AOR album with the right ingredients so if you want your AOR to have layers of keyboards, melodic riffs and catchy choruses, then Wild Rose has recorded this album for you. One of this year´s best pure AOR albums and if this album would have been released in the 80s it would have been talk of the town. My AOR heart is on fire. Don’t miss this gem.

HEAVY PARADISE

After the fantastic two releases from OUTLOUD, another band from my country ,Greece, comes to prove that this country can rock! After a couple of days listening of WILD ROSE’s debut album “Half Past Midnight”,I have to admit that this is a melodic rock bliss! The band consists of George “The Captain” Bitzios on lead vocals, Andy Rock on guitars, John “Jiosby” Bitzios on guitars, “Dirty” Harris Patsos on keys,  Alex Hughes on drums and Phill “Gun” Sakaloglou on bass guitars. They achieved to sign with Retrospect Records for the release of their album and on September 1st, “Half Past Midnight” will be released worlwide!
So, on this 11 track album you are going to hear some excellent melodic rock stuff with an 80’s feeling all over the album, great melodies, catchy choruses and a solid production. The album starts off with a melodic intro and after that comes the first track of the album! Beautiful keybords, a nice riff and a solid rhythm section consist  “That Girl”. “Too Late” continues in the same brilliant tempo. Very good melodies, some great vocal lines from George Bitzios and a catchy chorus. “It’s All About Love” is my favourite tune from this release. It’s one of these tracks that makes you wanna push the repeat button again and again! The melody is simply amazing, the vocals, the guitar work; everything in this song is perfectly balanced. At this point, I have to say that, so far, I’m impressed by the band’s lead singer, George Bitzios, this guy is so talented and achieved to give the extra ‘push’ to the whole album!  Other highlights from this debut album are the ‘old’ fashioned melodic rock gem “Fire In the Night”, the more up-tempo tune of “I Want You Back” and the ‘heavier’ “Another Shot”, which has a catchy as hell chorus!!
Closing, I have to say that it’s really difficult to find a weak moment or something average here! Every single track in this release is  pure Melodic Rock bliss for every fan of this gerne! Great musicianship, passionate vocals, solid guitar work, huge melodies and an 80’s feeling are the ingridients of “HALF PAST MIDNIGHT”. Taste it!
HeavyParadise’s Rating :8/10

MYGLOBALMIND

If there ever was a norm for roller coaster of line up changes for a band, you would have to put the Greece based AOR band Wild Rose right up there. As if it wasn’t hard enough to come out of Greece playing this type of music to begin with, these guys finally released their debut record titled “Half Past Midnight” after a long time coming and some time on hiatus from some of the band members.  Their main composer and songwriter Andy Rock still kept on pushing on forward and writing music until things finally fell into place some years later when George Bitzios came into the mix to complete the re hauled line up. This later came to finally professionally record their main songs on what we have here their debut record.

The music here is more Melodic Hard Rock, with mixes of AOR in between the lines. The basic structure formula is the catchy hooks that resonate around the vocals of Bitzios, which has a very good voice his aggressive style plays well into the music often times I think about Harry Hess of Harem Scarem when listening to songs like ‘Hold Me”. This tune holds up well with any other of the melodic rock atmosphere on the album.

What good AOR record would be complete without some addicting guitar melodies right? You can hear that all through the album and on song like “Too Late” you can pick up on the guitars as they provide a quick tempo rhythm to fill the air with delight. Another tightly ballad comes in via a true AOR essence in “Goodbye” which holds more then enough wight on an already solid overall album. The high rising lyrics in “Another Shot” scream out yet another highlight in this already filled album full of hooks and melodies. The only downfall here is the repetition of some of the structures of each track, which can get a little monotonous after a while, but it you don’t mind that then is a solid effort.

I hear some Talisman influences in these Greeks, which should not surprise me as the guys played an opening spot on the 2007 Talisman Farewell Tour in Mylos Thessaloniki. The vocals are outstanding and I say this because I usually don’t hear the quality of the leading vocals at all when it comes to unknown bands trying to make in a scene that doesn’t receive the most fan fare, that and the fact that some foreign acts lack that particular flavor, but you experience nothing of the such from these guys as the vocals are plentiful and infectious to keep you entertained. I was really amazed at the quality of the musicianship and song structure and I am happy for the guys to finally receive a record release through Retrospect Records. For any fans of the genre you have to check them out as you will be pleasantly surprised, even more for the amount of limited music in the AOR/Melodic Rock genre to come out Greece. Check em out you won’t regret it.

Written by Denys

Ratings Denys   7/10

MELODICROCK.IT

Wild Rose… bello o brutto che sia quest’album, sicuramente questo nome segna un momento importante per la Grecia. Infatti i Wild Rose,provenienti proprio dalla Grecia, possono essere catalogati come il primo vero gruppo Aor degli ultimi anni proveniente dal paese di tanti Poeti e Filosofi.
Quale paese migliore, con così tanta storia di arte ed artisti, a fare da background ad un gruppo che dovrebbe fare della melodia e della poesia la sua arma vincente?
Partiamo però dal gruppo, nato nel 2004 dalla passione per il genere del chitarrista Andreas Peyos, stenterà a decollare per la difficoltà di trovare in Grecia musicisti adatti al genere che Andy aveva in mente.
Il gruppo dovrà quindi aspettare il 2011 per trovare una sua identità stabile nelle persone diGeorge Bitzios (voce), lo stesso Andy Peyos (Chitarra e cori), John Bitzios (chitarra), Haris Patsos (tastiere) e Vaggelis Domanos (batteria) e poter dare quindi alla luce questo loro primo lavoro ufficiale intitolato Half Past Midnight.

Emozionale l’intro Half Past Midnight che ci introduce a questo lavoro in cui da subito si apprezza la bella chitarra messa in campo da Andy Peyos unita forse ad una produzione però forse troppo 80′s style… si continua quindi sulle note di That Girl con la tastiera che fa da tappeto rosso per la chitarra sostenuta (ma chiariamo il termine, questo album si mantiene sempre e comunque su un Aor molto soft) e la voce graffiante che a tratti può ricordare, con le dovute proporzioni, Paul Laine.
E’ sempre il gioco tra tastiera e chitarra a reggere la melodia dell’ottima Hold Me, così come nelle successive Too Late e Goodbye, quest’ultima forte anche di un’ottima prova vocale diCaptain Bitzios…
Non cambia lo stile della melodia anche quando si alza il tiro e si prende velocità come inCome Back. Bella e accattivante l’introduzione di Fire in the Night, che aggiunge atmosfera con la perfetta entrata della chitarra e della voce… uno dei pezzi meglio riusciti del lotto.
Si continua sulla stessa strada tracciata in precedenza anche con Want You Back, Another Shot e It’s All About Love, e si conclude con la bella Edge of Your Dreams che ancora una volta lascia apprezzare la buona chitarra di Andy.

IN CONCLUSIONE

Un album gradevole, in puro stile AOR anni ’80, che piacerà sicuramente a chi cerca buone melodie unite ad una buona esecuzione. Partiamo però dai punti “deboli“, e cioè una produzione forse troppo indietro con i tempi e troppo in stile ’80 ed un songwriting non ancora del tutto maturo. Inoltre, ma questo è più un fattore personale, trovo che manchi un po’ per il genere proposto una mega ballata strappalacrime.
Per il resto, un album che comunque consiglio di ascoltare dato l’ottimo lavoro melodico e la buona classe messa in campo dal gruppo. Certo che mi piacerebbe vedere cosa avrebbero potuto fare i Wild Rose con un Alessandro Del Vecchio in regia e con magari una manciata di pezzi scritti dal buon Pierpaolo “Zorro11″ Monti… per il resto il gruppo è sicuramente sulla strada giusta per siglare una buona iniziazione Aor firmata Grecia e per aggiungere un altro interessante tassello sul piano Europeo ed internazionale…
Rating: 8/10

PLANET AOR

We constantly receive news about bands in more and more countries releasing quality material. Scandinavia and Sweden in particular has always been high on the list of countries who produced great melodic rock. Nowdays bands from Italy, Argentina, Brazil have been heard of with some success. So when a band from Greece shows up I at first get somewhat surprised.

Wild Rose has a variegated career behind them as Andrew Pegios 2004 formed a band but had trouble finding a stable line-up. In 2006, the band found a line-up that would keep for a while, at least over 2007 when they served as warm up for Talismanwhich then made their farewell tour and simultaneously released a promo CD.

Now in 2011 after several changes in the line-up (most recent addition came this year when new vocalistGeorge “Captain” Bitzios joined the band) finally we get an album, an album that reminds us of days when the melodic rock scene was at its highest. Bon Jovi is given as one of the major influences, and there’s no doubt about that allthough the vocals reminds us more of Richie Sambora than Jon Bon Jovi. My thoughts goes to Samboras underrated solo debut Stranger In This Town, despite Wild Rose – Half Past Midnight not has a bluesy sound on their album, nah we have found a proper AOR-scented album with sounds of those classic keyboards splendidly played by “Dirty” Haris Patsos that colors the sound as it was 1986.

It’s up-tempo rockers and power ballads of high quality all with the ingredients I want, good melodies where all instruments contribute and strong refrains. There is only one out of eleven tracks that doesn’t seem to belong and that’s Another Shot which is not really bad but does not feel quite as well produced as others and therefore out of place. My absolute favorite is probably Goodbye, a power ballad that holds a standard that it would fit on Slippery When Wet.

If Wildrose can hold together the band and get the attention they deserve in AOR circles there’s no reason not to see them close to you soon.
Rating: 8,5/10

 STORMBRINGER

Aus Griechenland kommen seit einiger Zeit überwiegend schlechte Nachrichten, doch kann ich auch eine äußerst erfreuliche vermelden: das Debüt der jungen, vielversprechenden AOR-Band WILD ROSE. Gegründet bereits 2004, traten WILD ROSE mit eigenen Kompositionen erst 2007 mit der Veröffentlich einer Promo-CD („It’s All About Love”) und als Support-Act von TALISMAN an eine breitere Öffentlichkeit.

Nach einigen Besetzungswechseln kristallisierte sich 2010 ein festes Line-Up heraus, sodass mit der Produktion einer offiziellen CD begonnen werden konnte. Als Vorbilder nennen die fünf Griechen u.a. BON JOVI, DEF LEPPARD, CHICAGO, JOURNEY, EUROPE, WINGER, TREAT und KISS. Als weitere Einflüsse könnte man die ganze Palette der großen AOR-Bands anführen, vor denen sie sich überhaupt nicht verstecken müssen, denn “Half Past Midnight” besitzt alle Trademarks des klassischen AOR: Keyboard und Gitarren-orientierte Songs mit catchy Hooklines und schönen Melodien in jeder Form, mal richtig rockig, dann im Midtempobereich oder in Balladenform.

Die Songtitel (“Hold Me”, “Come Back”, “Too Late”, “That Girl”) und die Texte lassen kein Klischee des Genres aus. Macht nichts, sie wollen keinen Literaturpreis gewinnen, sondern die Fans mit ihrer Musik verwöhnen, und das tun sie auch. Ich habe selten ein solch ausgewogenes Debüt einer jungen Gruppe gehört wie “Half Past Midnight”. Kein Filler stört den Fluss der wirklich ausgefeilten Songs, Abwechslung wird ganz groß geschrieben, keine Langweile kommt auf, darum will ich auch nicht einzelne Titel herausheben.

Kritiker werden sagen, alles schon tausendmal gehört. Na und? Gute Musik kann man immer hören! Vor 20, 30 Jahren im richtigen Land (USA) hätten WILD ROSE eine große Karriere machen können, heute leider nicht mehr, aber ich bin überzeugt mit “Half Past Midnight” im Gepäck werden die Südländer bei den Kennern der Szene gut ankommen. Es ware ihnen unbedingt zu wünschen. Ich hoffe jedenfalls sie bleiben dran.

Wertung: 4.5 von 5.0

FALLEN ANGEL OF ROCK

Pocas bandas salidas de Grecia han sido recordadas en el mundo del Hard Rock: Douglas, Raw Silk… Pero cuatro años atrás un EP de mismo título que su banda, llegó a los oidos de los amantes a través de Myspace y Blogs especializados. Cuando se les daba por perdidos llegó la noticia de su próximo álbum, donde incluirían los tres temas del EP, pero su distribución aun sin decidir hizo retrasar el lanzamiento, hasta que Retrospect Records apostó por ellos y al fin tenemos la garantía de conseguirlo.

Lo que ustedes oíran no es nada asombroso o diferente, es una vuelta a los años mágicos del Hard Rock, sin complicaciones, sin secretos, muchas bandas intentan emular el sonido 80’s, pero dejadme que os diga: “Nunca tan perfecto como Wild Rose”.

Pasadas las “0:30” el fuego arde dentro de nuestro cuerpo en forma de Hard Rock y la aventura comienza:

“That Girl” citas, recogiendo amores, montándolos en descapotables color Diablo, luces, gafás, reflejos, cardados, rompiendo reglas y actitudes. “Too Late” fuentes iluminadas, melodías brillantes, miradas desafiantes, movimientos peligrosos, solos de guitarra explosivos.

Profundizando en la parte romántica de este viaje, “It’s All About Love” como muestra de fácil escucha y calidad sobrante en las vocales. La envolvente “Hold Me” teclados cristalinos fusionados con riffs ardientes.

Claro está que este Half Past Midnight de haber salido veinte y cuatro años atrás, hubiese arrasado y de seguro el single escogido sería “Fire In The Night” estribillos repetitivos, comercialidad pura, frases matadoras… Solo adjetivos para tal himno.

Continúa la acción, otro “Another Shot” al corazón, la favorita quizás, los coros mas destacables, temás así levantan el ánimo. Una pega podría ser el parecido de los temas, sobretodo la parte melódica que puede ser repetitiva, pero ningún problema si ambas te agradan.

“Edge Of Your Dreams” a pesar de su prometedor título, es de lo mas flojo. pero potente en su base rítmica. “Come Back” movida, bailes y poses a cámara lenta, humo en los callejones, todo queda en algo mas alegre con la llegada del estribillo.

Hora de decir adiós, balada amorosa, recordando en solitario: brisas, mares y avenidas ¿”Goodbye”?, nada de eso, todo vuelve, la mejor música, sensaciones, amistades, chicas, la atracción y el deseo lo mueven todo “I Want You Back” para despedir una larga y maravillosa noche. Un placer poder analizar algo tan mágico, que considero lo mejor del año.

Como dije, no se destacarían grandes solos y composiciones, solo dejate llevar y vive el sueño.

ROCK OVERDOSE

Δευτέρα βράδυ μετά την δουλειά..πρώτη μέρα μετά απο διακοπές….
Αράζω στο μπαλκόνι και τσεκάρω τα email..

Ένα από αυτά περιείχε το cd των Wild Rose, με τίτλο “Half Past Midnight”

Αν και το AoR δεν είναι απο τα αγαπημένα μου μουσικά ακούσματα ,στα όπλα η καθαρή αντικειμενική μου άποψη και φύγαμε για την ακρόαση του δίσκου…

Έλληνες οι Wild Rose εκ Θεσσαλονικης ορμώμενοι, αν και υπάρχουν από το 2004, κατάφεραν επιτέλους να κυκλοφορήσουν το ντεμπούτο τους άλμπουμ, από τη Retrospect Records, το οποίο θα είναι διαθέσιμο στην αγορά, στις 1 Σεπτεμβρίου 2011.

Μια ευχάριστη έκπληξη με περίμενε ακούγωντας τον δίσκο…
Μελωδίες ήρεμες και ταξιδιάρικες, riffs βγαλμένα από τα 80s.

Ειδικά το “Another Shot” μου έφερε ένα ευχάριστο χαμόγελο στα χείλη.
Αξιοπρεπέστατο το στήσιμο του δίσκου, με δυναμική εκεί που πρέπει και μελωδία ακριβώς εκει που χρειάζεται..

“Another Shot”, “ Edge of your dreams “, “ Comeback” , “Want you back “ μερικά απο τα μικρά διαμαντάκια που άκουσα αυτό το βράδυ.

11 τραγούδια στο σύνολο, όμορφα προσεγμένα, και με πολλύ καλή παραγωγή, με τα πλήκτρα να έχουν το πρώτο λόγο, δεν αφήνουν κανέναν οπαδό του είδους αδιάφορο.

Όση ώρα κράτησε η ακρόαση του “Half Past Midnight, το μυαλό μου έκανε ταξιδία μέσα σε 80s μονοπάτια.
Πολλές φορές μου ήρθε η εικόνα του εαυτού μου επάνω στην μηχάνη να χάνομαι στους δρόμους με ένα σάκο στην πλάτη και έχωντας τους ήχους του συγκεκτιμένου δίσκου στα αυτιά..

Μια ακόμα απόδειξη οτι ετούτη η χώρα βγάζει ωραίες μπάντες…
Keep rocking guys!!!

SOUTHERN ROCK

AOR από τη Θεσσαλονίκη; Και όμως, όσοι δεν γνωρίζουν τους Wild Roses τότε καλά θα κάνουν να πάρουν δίπλα τους πολλές μπύρες και να πατήσουν το Play.  Η μουσική θα μιλήσει από μόνη της.
Η μουσική εδώ είναι πιο μελωδικό hard rock, με μίξη του AOR μεταξύ των γραμμών. Ο βασικός τύπος δομής είναι τα πιασάρικα riff που αντηχούν γύρω από τα φωνητικά του Bitzios, ο οποίος έχει πολύ καλή φωνή, επιθετικό ύφος του και πολύ μελωδικός. Αυτή η μελωδία κρατά ψηλά καλά με οποιοδήποτε άλλο άλμπουμ  του μελωδικού ροκ.
Το δεύτερο κομμάτι, καθώς το πρώτο είναι εισαγωγικό, είναι ένα τραγούδι που το είχαν και στο demo τους που κυκλοφόρησαν το 2009. Αρκετά καλό κομμάτι , με καλή μελωδία και πατήματα πάνω σε TOTO και Foreigner με μια γενικότερη Bon Jovi αίσθηση. Καλά φωνητικά, με μια γεμάτη φωνή αλλά λίγο απρόσωπη θα την χαρακτήριζα. Θα προτιμούσα περισσότερο χρώμα μέσα στο κομμάτι

Το Too late είναι επίσης πολύ καλή σύνθεση και τα φωνητικά είναι καλύτερα από πριν. Αρκετά καλή  μελωδία και ρεφρέν ευκολομνημόνευτο , ρυθμικό. Οι κιθάρες είναι ειλικρινά φανταστικές, με καλά solos και μετρημένες όπως πρέπει. Τα πλήκτρα υπάρχουν παντού και είναι πολύ πολύ καλά στημένα μέσα στη σύνθεση.

Όση ώρα κράτησε η ακρόαση του “Half Past Midnight, το μυαλό μου έκανε ταξίδια μέσα σε 80s μονοπάτια.
Πολλές φορές μου ήρθε η εικόνα του εαυτού μου επάνω στην μηχάνη να χάνομαι στους δρόμους με ένα σάκο στην πλάτη και έχοντας τους ήχους του συγκεκριμένου δίσκου στα αυτιά..

Μια ακόμα απόδειξη οτι ετούτη η χώρα βγάζει ωραίες μπάντες…
Keep rocking guys!!!

METALKAOZ

Greece has not been that productive in bands from the melodic Rock/AOR scene. Thus, it was nice to see WILD ROSE finally delivering their first full album after some sporadic self-financed demo offerings, this time via Retrsospect Records. Good news is, too, that “Half Past Midnight” is a release you’re gonna unconditionally like if keyboards and sweet vocals are your cup of tea. That said…

…let’s move on to music itself: the album is strongly bonded to the generic AOR/melodic Rock style as witnessed widely the last years throughout (mainly) Europe. There’s a strong sense of melody widespread, with nice keyboard layers playing the main role at times while the rhythm guitars are quite typical but spit fire when it comes to soloing. The bass/drums are ordinary put trustworthy even if I’d like to have the drums sound more physical. The vocals, now, are beautiful and some partial lack of the accent that (truth is) only the Americans have is of minor importance.

The tracklist is well set and the album flows easily bringing a strong set of melodies in the foreground. The choruses are fitting (an ace for AOR songs) and some sing along live-friendly parts are also visible. There are no party tunes here so expect minor scale hooks with a strapping vibe of melancholy and heartbeat. After the first audition I took the album out for some night drive and I was sure “Half Past Midnight” proved to be a fitting companion for…half past midnight. And good thing, not to forget, is that WILD ROSE is a band that successfully draws and combines inspiration from the American (STARSHIP, Michael Bolton, prime BON JOVI), British (e.g. FM,STRANGEWAYS) and Scandinavian (e.g. TREAT, EUROPE) monsters of the genre without being copycats; and that’s on their benefit.

It’s nice to see bands from ‘obscure’ countries releasing nice AOR albums; the disease is spread allover the globe, we hope, and bands like WILD ROSE (nice name!) with albums like “Half Past Midnight” make me hope there’s still space for sensational songs in this so misjudged field.

7/10

ROCK PAGES

Καταπληκτική κυκλοφορία από τους Θεσσαλονικείς ΑOR-Hard rockers! Πραγματικά, η δουλειά του συγκροτήματος στο “Half Past Midnight” είναι τόσο καλή που εντυπωσιάζει στο άκουσμα έντεκα τόσο δυνατών συνθέσεων που πετυχαίνουν το βασικότερο: να σου μείνουν στο μυαλό με την πρώτη ακρόαση!
Οι Wild Rose έχουν ακούσει προσεκτικά τα είδωλά τους και τα έχουν κοπιάρει πιστά προσθέτοντας τα δικά τους στοιχεία και χαρακτηριστικά. Επίσης, κάτι πολύ σημαντικό είναι η εξαιρετική δουλειά στην παραγωγή που ενισχύει ακόμα περισσότερο το ήδη πολύ καλό αποτέλεσμα και σε κάνει να νομίζεις ότι δεν ακούς ελληνικό συγκρότημα, κάτι που μόνο σαν κομπλιμέντο μπορεί να αναφερθεί. Τα φωνητικά του George Bitzios έχουν κάτι από τις μεγάλες αμερικάνικες AOR φωνές και η υπέροχη χροιά τους κατευθύνουν τα κομμάτια με μαεστρία. Τρομερή δουλειά και στις κιθάρες από τον «εγκέφαλο» του συγκροτήματος Andy “Rock” Peyos και τον John “Jiosby” Bitzios, όπως και στα πλήκτρα από τον “Dirty” Haris Patsos, που παίζει πολύ σημαντικό ρόλο στον εντελώς ρετρό ‘80s ήχο των Wildrose.
Σε μια χρονιά, όπως η περσινή που εντυπωσιαστήκαμε από ένα συγκρότημα σαν τους White Widdow, που ήρθαν από το πουθενά με ένα τρομερό ντεμπούτο και μια αξιόλογη συνέχεια, είναι πολύ σημαντικό να ξέρουμε ότι έχουμε και στην χώρα μας μια τόσο καλή AOR-Hard Rock μπάντα, που πραγματικά δεν έχει τίποτα να ζηλέψει από άλλες πιο γνωστές του εξωτερικού.

HARD ROCK HAVEN

Half Past Midnight is the brand new, debut album by Greek-based AOR/melodic rock band Wild Rose issued by Retrospect records. A part of the Greek underground scene since the mid ‘00s, Wild Rose take the valiant step of an international album release in September. Their attempt seems well justified considering the flattering comments the group has received though various online sources and the prestigious Classic Rock AOR Magazine; all for good reason since Wild Rose is the first Greek AOR band to put out an official full-length album. Of course bands preceding them have flirted with AOR (namely Outloud and Danger Angel), yet Half Past Midnight is the first album to fall perfectly within that genre.

From the opening notes of “That Girl” the attentive listener will be able to tell that vocals, guitars, keyboards and rhythm section are bound to provide a genuine AOR experience. On account of the above, it should come as no surprise that most songs follow a particular patent: melodic keyboards, ever-present guitars, standard-to-mid tempo rhythm section, topped by mid range melodic vocals baring a rough edge.

The line up features guitarists John Bitzios and Andy Pegios, keyboardist Harry Patsos, bassist Phil Sakaloglou and lead singer George Bitzios. It seems that all five musicians share a similar musical mentality, delivering their own brand of ‘mellow’ rock as they choose to call it. While George’s vocals are the undeniable focal point of Wild Rose, the guitars and keyboards shine brightly on Half Past Midnight. In particular the lead guitar work of John Bitzios is nothing less than brilliant, bringing technique and flamboyance into Wild Rose without compromising the AOR atmosphere of the album.

It is pointless to look out for any fillers on Half Past Midnight for there are none. Truth be told, riffs, melodies and rhythm patterns tend to be repeated on the eleven tracks of this debut, yet that is the nature of the genre. Just about every song on Half Past Midnight deals with the subject of love and romance, always sounding vibrant and interesting.

Overall what you get with Wild Rose is stellar songwriting, intense performances and infectious hooks on all songs. What differentiated Wild Rose from other contemporary AOR bands are primarily the distinct vocals of George Bitzios as well as the ever present guitar attack, developing into an equally important part of the Wild Rose musical identity. Wild Rose’s Half Past Midnight is absolutely essential addition for any AOR/melodic rock fan.

Hardrock Haven rating: 9/10

BE ROCK RADIO

The year 2011 is a landmark for Wild Rose, the band from Greece released the album “Half Past Midnight” and this album is the best omen for the band that slowly makes the first steps in discography. This album is decent, it is based in melody and its freshness. If you are a melodic type of listener, this new release is for you. A prelude comes to welcome you, having the name of the album’s title. “Half Past Midnight” is a smooth instrumental track that could easily be a full length track and a really nice ballad, it delivers you slowly to “That Girl”, the one that after midnight rises up from the daylight “ashes”. This track spread its wings sewed with melodic notes that can stroll around every corner of this city. Creative music and vocals that transfuse these lyrics easily to you is what you have to expect in this one. “Hold Me” is a track that leans on its music mostly, it’s the one you will remember after listening to it, inspired melodies and riffs that rise a wave of colorful notes exists within this one. “Too Late” expresses a disappointment in its lyrics because in life sometimes the time runs faster than you and sorry comes too late. Things change, people as well and promises break by our own hands. Music has the spite of the lyrics, keyboards, guitars and vocals in an exemplary performance spread the melodies open handed to you! “Come Back” speaks melodically, moves in a carrying rhythm and feels like the flow of the vesper’s wind all around me. It’s a breeze of elegant notes and “eternal” lyrics that we all have spoken and some of us still do. Pay attention to the skillful guitar performance as these fingers “paint” with notes all these that lyrics speak for. The smoothest “Fire In The Night” can inflame your midnight sky with a variety of melodies that flicker to
the beat of the drum like candles in the call of the wind, delicate and capturing!! This album contains the melodies that can satisfy all types of rockers and especially those who crave for pure melody. Wild Rose “blossoms” where Melodic Rock breaths, as for you…”inhale” their music and get into their melodic world!!
Snake Eyes: 8.0/10

MELODICROCK.COM

Wild Rose – Half Past Midnight – Retrospect Records – Wild Rose are a Greek melodic hard rock band with a big dose of Bon Jovi styled stadium rock, mixed with a vocalist that sounds like a raspier, gruffer version of Cheap Trick’s Robin Zander. The vocals are a little much at times – quite a bit of over-singing, or screeching going on, but at the same time, a lot of passion too. Musically this offers nothing new, but it does offer some enjoyable, passionate uptempo rock songs about girls, heartache and good times. Keyboards also play an important part and the band’s sound is very commercial in an 80s FM radio kind of way. Pretty good stuff if you want some old school European melodic rock. Rating: 86%

ROCKWAY

Αν είστε θαυμαστές των Bon Jovi, Loverboy, Toto, Rio, FM, Danger Danger, Foreigner, Michael Bolton, Journey και αναλόγου ύφους συγκροτημάτων, τότε οφείλεται να ακούσετε το παρθενικό άλμπουμ των WILD ROSE.Η μπάντα ξεκίνησε το 2004 από τη Θεσσαλονίκη και το 2007 κυκλοφόρησε το πρώτο της promo/cd ενώ παράλληλα έπαιξε support στους Talisman. Οι συχνές αλλαγές όμως στη σύνθεση τους, έφερε μία μικρή αναβλητικότητα  στη δράση του γκρουπ αλλά τελικά οι WILD ROSE κατάφεραν να κυκλοφορήσουν το ντεμπούτο τους άλμπουμ που τιτλοφορείται “Half Past Midnight” (είχε προηγηθεί άλλο ένα promo τo 2009) από την δισκογραφική εταιρεία Retrospect Records. Η συνταγή των WILD ROSE γνωστή και αγαπημένη σαν τα καλοκαιρινά κοκτέιλ που ενώ στην αρχή πας για ένα –δύο στο τέλος καταλήγεις να μεθάς με κανάτες και σφηνάκια. Οι  WILD ROSE δεν διεκδικούν δάφνες πρωτοτυπίας, απλά ήρθαν για να παίξουν λατρεμένο αμερικάνικο μελωδικό ροκ, με μπόλικο aor δυναμισμό και να ξεκουράσουν τις ψυχές μας από τους βάρβαρους ρυθμούς της καθημερινότητας. Παρά την αναμενόμενη επιβλητική κυριαρχία των πλήκτρων  του εξαιρετικού Haris Patso και της θαυμάσιας φωνής του George Bitzios (η μεγάλη έκπληξη του δίσκου), δημιουργική και εμπνευσμένη δουλειά έχουν κάνει και οι δύο κιθαρίστες, Andy Pegios  και John Bitzio, οι οποίοι διαψεύδουν τις ντόπιες μηντιακές κασσάνδρες που υποστηρίζουν πως το συγκεκριμένο είδος υστερεί σε κιθαριστικά θέματα και ανάλογους οργανοπαίκτες. Τραγούδια σαν τα, “That Girl” (μνημειώδες ρεφρέν), “It’s Too Late”, “Hold me”, “Edge of Your Dreams”, “Another Shot” και “Want You Back” αν είχαν κυκλοφορήσει πριν καμιά εικοσαριά χρόνια (και βάλε) θα είχαν γράψει ιστορία για τους οπαδούς του είδους. Οι Θεσσαλονικείς WILD ROSE τολμούν και το πετυχαίνουν σε μεγάλο βαθμό να κυκλοφορήσουν στη χώρα που οι ντόπιοι μουσικοί ειδήμονες από πολέμιοι του melodic rock  τώρα γίνονται και μέντορες , να παίξουν γνήσιο, απολαυστικό, παλιομοδίτικο aor, πλημμυρισμένο με ‘80 μελωδίες. Αξίζει ένα μεγάλο μπράβο στους Wild Rose και περιμένουμε στο μέλλον ακόμα πιο “ανεβασμένες” μελωδίες.Φώτης Μελέτης.

METAL PERSPECTIVE

Wild Rose then. Well, we do live for those surprises, don’t we? It’s been years, since the days of Raw Silk and Douglas actually, for a Greek melodic rock band to create an album of such fine quality in terms of top notch lead vocals, detailed production and well crafted songwriting. And trust me on this; it’s far from the easiest thing to do living in a country where extreme metal, alternative rock and rap/hip hop are considered to be the mainstream. Thankfully, pro critics and former AOR haters have become today’s MR praisers, so these lads from Thessaloniki might stand a chance to make it (sarcasm intended).To cut to the chase, apart from those too cliché at times lyrics and the backing vocals department (where things could have been somewhat more convincing), there is no reason to nag about the end result at all. Not a filler in sight, the sound is warm and has a natural tone (Dennis Ward and Khymera come to mind) and not “plastic” like the majority of nowadays releases, influences are here of course but they are well-absorbed and range from early Bon Jovi to House Of Lords, songs are given a gritty edge by the raspy lead vocals (talking about surprises…), keys are everywhere, arrangements are orchestrated throughout with lots of harmonies and cleverly played guitar leads, choruses are huge and made to sing along, but most of all “Half Past Midnight” will keep you coming back for more spins. Now, let me recall how many 2011 CDs made me do this… After seven years in the business and only one demo released due to countless lineup changes, Retrospect Records signed these newcomers and hopefully it’s time to get the credit they deserve.
Rating: 8/10  Reviewer: Stefanos Lountzis