The Darren Phillips Project is a new project from Sidney (Australia) that released their debut album “Volume One” on September 23rd.
The man himself “Darren Phillips” (compositions, vocals, production…) joined with producer and multi-instrumentalist Daniel Skeed and a long list of guests !
I almost missed this one , thanks to a good friend who posted one of the songs from you tube on my profile !!
I have never stared longer to my screen than now , while listening to what I heard !!  Who is this guy ?  Why have I never heard of him before ?

I got in touch with Darren to tell him how amazed I was from hearing this song and asked to buy the album !!
He send me the mp3 files immediatly so I could start listening right away !  Until now I only heard the one song from you tube so I didn’t know what to expect for the other songs.
I pushed play and……I was stunned by what I heard…….top class AOR , the way I like it , combined with other great melodic rock tracks !
All very diverse , with each song a different vocalist ; yet all very much the same thanks to the amazing songwriting of Darren who surrounded him with the top of the top !
I’m not lying when I say that this is by far the best independant release I’ve heard since….very long time !!

The first song “Ready to Fly” nails me down into my chair , my god , stunning vocals by Dennis Ward (do I hear Khymera here) accompanied by the amazing guitars of Enzo and Heinke !
I’m just starting and already I’m thinking this album will rank high on my yearlist !!  This is what they say “AOR by the numbers”
“Heartbreaker” , written by co-producer Dan who is also a brilliant musician/songwriter , is a bit rougher and has more attitude.
The vocals are by Philip Lindstrand (a freelance artist , music teacher) from Sweden. I never heard of the man but his voice suits the song very well.
“Heart Attack” with the voices of Sisters Doll  is more of a rocker with some amazing bass playing here by Daniel Skeed. A great rock song about a hot chick !
On “I Believe” we hear the master of AOR , Mr Robby LeBlanc (Find Me , Blanc Faces). I’m a huge fan of this man because he simply has a stunning voice !
I feel like I’m on top of the world listening to this song ! Top class and my favorite for sure on the album.
“Monday” is a semi ballad with the vocals of Daniel Skeed and one of the greatest young guitar players I’ve heard ; Michael Palace. The song was written almost 10 years ago.
It has that overall 80’s sound yet with a more modern approach in it !
“Cold Turkey” follows this perfectly being more of a power ballad with the man himself “Darren Phillips” on vocals. He says it’s his tribute to Bon Jovi !
“Defying gravity” , the track that started all this , with Robin Ericsson (Degreed) on vocals and where Enzo Almani (White Widdow) shines with killer guitar playing.
Darren wrote this song for his wife he said.
“Thieves in the Night” has Jace Pawlak at the microphone , he reworked the chorus of the song and gives that something special to it.
“One Shot” is the only track without a guest star in it , with lots of keyboards and Darren’s tribute to one of his favorite bands “Huey Lewis and the News !
If you buy the digipack version of the album you get one more exta song on it !  An acoustic version of “Ready to Fly”

As I said in the beginning of this review , this one of the best independant albums released this year !!  For me Darren Phillips Project not only managed to get into my top 3 of my yearlist ,
he actualy gets into my top 10 AOR / Melodic rock releases of all time !!  How’s that for a calling card !!
Absolutely briliant release. A must buy for all who love AOR / Melodic rock music !  I could listen to this all day long !!
If it was up to me he may immediatly start recording the follow up to this one !  😉

Tracklist:

01. Ready to fly
02. Heartbreaker
03. Heart attack
04. I believe
05. Monday
06. Cold turkey
07. Defying gravity
08. Thieves in the night
09. One shot
10. Ready to fly (acoustic)