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John Norum / Press

"...If John had to hold back on his solos on the Europe album, he’s really compensated it here. I’m not saying he’s over-playing, but where there’s place for a nice lick, he sure doesn’t rob us of the moment...."

"...“Play Yard Blues” ist ein Album, welches klingt wie aus einer anderen Zeit. Innovationen? Fehlanzeige! Zeitgeist? Bitte ganz schnell vergessen! John Norum hat ein Album nach seinem Gusto aufgenommen und das ist verdammt erdig, ehrlich und authentisch! Man muss dieses vom Hardrock infizierte Gitarrenspiel nicht mögen, aber man sollte dem Mann Respekt entgegenbringen, dass er auf sämtliche Trends pfeift und sein Ding durchzieht. Und das macht er gut!"

"...This is easily Norum’s most consistent solo album. Informed guitarists will love this album but a wider reappraisal is long overdue. This new release should at least encourage a wider investigation of a sometimes patchy but quite worthy back catalogue, and a guitarist who is truly the equal of those he cites as major influences."

"...Well ‘Play Yard Blues’ is an ambitious album, sonically Norums guitar is a million miles away from the commercial peak of Europe, yet this IS Norum, this is what he grew up listening to; Deep Purple, Thin Lizzy, UFO, Hendrix et al, and couple that with his numerous collaborations with Glenn Hughes and co, then it all makes sense. I’d urge all fans of Europe to check this, and his previous releases out, only then will you fully understand the man himself. A career built on dreams and adulation don’t always lead to contentment, this album proves life is a journey not a destination. This album is dedicated to his late wife Michelle, and she will be looking down proudly at what John has achieved here. RESPECT, BELIEF, BRAVERY AND AMBITION."

"...Der nach Yngwie Malmsteen wohl bekannteste Gitarrenvirtuose im schwedischen Hardrock deckt auf seinem neuen Solowerk ein breites Spektrum im Classic Rock ab, bei dem sich seine Spielkunst wie gewohnt nicht vordergründig durch überbordende Technik ausdrückt, sondern durch gute Songs."

"...Comentar que John sigue cantando, y muy bien, en sus discos en solitario aunque, como es lógico, el tono de voz es más pausado y bluesy esta voz, con encanto y con un toque muy cálido que le da su puntito al álbum. De su labor guitarrera no hay mucho que decir, en el sentido de que sigue siendo uno de los maestros del estilo, quizás no lo suficientemente valorado, las cosas como son, pero que cualquiera que haya visto en directo a EUROPE en los últimos años pueda dar fé de lo increíble guitarrista que es nuestro protagonista...."

"...Play Yard Blues is an impressive record that benefits from distancing itself from the style of music Norum has been most associated with throughout his career, proving that he is a versatile musician."

"John Norum is a guitarist who I have a great deal of time for, he’s seriously a class act... If you’re already a fan of the man, then chances are you’ve already got the album! If you’re a fan of Europe, you may or may not have, but seriously, this is a great album and I am thankful to have a copy, so I do indeed recommend it to you all!"

"Hablar de John Norum es hablar de uno de los mejores guitarristas del Hard Rock y uno de los más infravalorados... En todo lo que ha grabado siempre ha dejado impreso un sello único, una manera muy personal de tocar y un gusto por la sensibilidad y la melodía que solo los elegidos poseen..."

"...NORUM has matured, but is a very cool and slick player. And he makes EUROPE cool. With that in mind, I would like to fuse into this NORUM’s very recent solo album, Play Yard Blues. The album is not EUROPE leftovers. It’s good blues/rock songs from start to finish. Yeah, I know, another blues/rock guitarist. But there is something fresh about NORUM’s latest. It could be that the Swedish influence adds something original to it. Or it could be he’s just been divinely inspired – both by his muses and by music; the album features three covers: a Thin Lizzy (how cool!), a Mountain, and a Mohogany Rush song. Or it could be NORUM really listens to his blues and feels it...

"The God returns! This time on more blues scales to take our minds away for one more time... Without too much noise and advertising tricks John Norum releases a masterpiece which this period expresses him 100% and prove us again why he belongs on the set of the top guitar players on earth..."

"Ahhhh, the majesty of Mr. John Norum! The Swedish Guitar God and ex-member/current member of the band Europe, just never seems to disappoint and his latest solo record, his 7th, is no exception. Play Yard Blues is Norum’s tribute to the Blues Rock that he grew up playing and falling in love him and gives him a chance to get back to his earliest of roots. Play Yard Blues consists of 10 tracks of both original and cover material and Norum’s playing is just flawless... Norum is one of those guitar players that totally deserves so much more respect and notoriety than he has been given and Play Yard Blues should help pave another road for him. Filled with tasty and soulful playing as well as some well penned blues laden originals with a sprinkling of classic cover tunes, Norum captures the essence of the Blues thrown against some nice Rock that works very well..."

"...If you’re in the market for blues/rock music, then I highly recommend giving this album a listen, but if, like me, you like great music played extremely well by great musicians, then I can’t recommend this album highly enough. This is good honest music, pure and simple, and in this day and age, that’s very hard to come by. Overall I’d give this album a very solid 9 out of 10."

"...JOHN NORUM ist ein sehr gutes Album gelungen, das beweist, dass er sicher zu einem der ganz grossen Gitarrenvirtuosen, die es ja unzählige in Schweden gibt, gehört. Ohne große Griffbrettwichsereien hat er ein wunderbares Gitarren-Album geschrieben und produziert, das ich guten Gewissens weiter empfehlen kann!"

"...vous l’avez compris cet album ravira les fans de hard blues mais aussi les nombreux fans de John Norum. Un John Norum en perpétuelle évolution et toujours au summum de sa forme. Prends bien soin de ton fils, John! Et reviens nous vite pour nous faire encore plus plaisir. Allez, Born Again!"

"...then we have a version of Thin Lizzy’s “Still In Love With You” featuring John Norum on guitar and lead vocals, and in light of recent events, I can think of nothing else I’ve heard to be a more heartfelt tribute to the late, great Gary Moore. John Norum’s sound and vocal tone are suited perfectly to the song, and it was goosebump inducing."...