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Produced by Surprises

Original line-up:

Thomas Wellnowski - Lead vocals
Dieter "Fish" Weber - Bass
Uwe Pulvermuller - Guitars
Sven Thiedecke - Keyboards
Stefan "Poncho" Reinicke - Drums
Joachim "Jogi" Muller - Guitars


Together we are strong
Don't need no money
Carry on
Rockin' down the highway
The price you have to pay
Stay the night


Classic 80s Euro-AOR/Melodic Rock like CRAAFT, DOMINOE, TERRA NOVA, ZINATRA, JOJO, NO CREDIT BAND, ZENO... mixed with some AVIATOR (1986)

I love bargain bins, because I always find some obscure LP for only $1. Sometimes I listen to the LP and hear some weak rock/metal, but there are some suprises every now and then. A week ago I was in Utrecht and found in a bargain bin in some second hand record-store a bunch of LPs for only $1 each.

Quite some interesting albums I bought and the LP of this German band SUPRISES was a big surprise to me, because their album 'Together we are strong' contained some great Euro-AOR 80s styled with many keyboards and very good vocals (totally not German based).

I had never heard of this band and I don't think anyone knows this LP, but I can surely recommend it because it is pretty good. SURPRISES came out of the Saarland region, which is Southeast Germany (a very nice place to visit by the way). Surprisingly I found some papers of backing info in the LP cover and learned that the band had performed on several TV stations in the 80s such as the famous RTL PLUS. I wonder if anyone out there remembers seeing this band.

Anyway, their debut LP was titled 'Together we are strong' and contained 8 well-produced tracks. Opener "Nightflyer" featured some great keyboards and is a pure uptempo AOR rocker like AVIATOR and the first FM album.

Following track "Together we are strong" is a fantastic Euro-AOR rocker like KARO, DOMINOE, CRAAFT... There are many keyboards in the song "Snowblind", a wonderful piece of pure AOR like AGENT! Side-A closes with the only weak song on the LP. The song is called "Don't need no money" and is an experimental AOR/Poprocker like TOTO meets MR. MISTER.

Side-B starts with "Carry on", this song has a wonderful pure AOR sound including a great hookline. The song sounds like a cross between JOJO and ZENO. Next track "Rockin' down the highway" is a nice TERRA NOVA kinda AOR rocker. Followed by "The price you have to pay", a melodic rockballad that hasn't got such a strong chorus but still is nice to hear.

Closing track of the LP is "Stay the night". This song is definitely the best song on the album. "Stay the night" is pure 80s AOR with some fantastic keys and a lovely chorus. The track reminds me very much of AVIATOR.

After the release of this obscure LP, SURPRISES released a single titled "This time I'm sure" and an LP around 1988. I haven't been able to get these albums, but I can recommend this LP 'Together we are strong' to everyone that likes 80s typed Euro-AOR like CRAAFT, DOMINOE, ZINATRA, TERRA NOVA...

It will be very hard to get a copy of this LP and you probably have to pay a lot. I was lucky to buy this LP for less than one American Dollar! SURPRISES was a big SURPRISE indeed!

(Points: 8.5 out of 10)


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