Two Of A Kind is a melodic rock band from Holland, whose self-titled debut album was released in 2007. Fred Hendrix, from Terra Nova heads up the band, with Esther Brouns and Anita Craenmehr sharing vocal duties and bandmates Gesuino Derosas (guitar), Hans in’t Zandt (drums) and Ron Hendrix (keyboards). Rise is 11 tracks of high-quality AOR/Melodic Rock but with the brilliant bass work of Fred, it has a heavier, more authoritative feel. There will be inevitable comparisons with Heart but, to me, this is a heavier, even more, melodic body of work. Opener ‘Here is the Now’, sets the scene with rich instrumentation overlaid by the harmonious vocal duo. ‘Rock Your World‘ is a funky pleasure with a great riff. ‘Wheel of Life’ is brilliant too, albeit with more than an echo of Chicago’s 25 or 6 to 4 in the vocal melody. ‘Higher’ starts all Who-ish but again hits majestic heights with the vocals. Alienation slows the pace with a delicious drum pattern and quickly turns into a ballad of style. ‘Without You’ is acoustic based at the beginning but, as the lighter-waving ballad builds, it still has a kick.
Rise is a superb album for AOR lovers and people who appreciate quality rock compositions and playing: it also avoids nearly all of the usual clichés and supplies 47 minutes of melodic heaven.