4.5 out of 5 Stars!
I love this woman! Alannah’s first four albums were all top-notch regarding her vocal performances and the production quality, and her material was generally a nice mixture of Hard Rock and AOR with hints of Blues Rock and Country Rock influences.
Rockinghorse, Alannah’s second album, is one of her most diverse, showcasing her pure melodic vocal prowess along with raspier “kick-butt-rocker” belting. Although this platter did not contain any huge hit along the lines of “Black Velvet,” the break-out single that appeared on Alannah’s debut album, there are indeed plenty of songs on Rockinghorse that could have been just as massively popular had Atlantic Records done better promotion.
“Livin’ on a Memory,” “Love in the Big Town,” “Lies and Rumours,” “Tumbleweed,” “Our World Our Times,” and “Make Me Happy” are all examples of Alannah at her rockin’ best, while “Song Instead of a Kiss,” “The Last Time I Saw William,” and “Sonny Say You Will” showcase Alannah’s mastery of the ballad, with each song (including the acoustic guitar-driven title track itself that closes out the album) making it clear that Alannah had something truly special to offer in the Hard Rock/AOR genre.
The fact that she could have broken into the big time in the same high fashion as Melissa Etheridge is without question. Indeed, Alannah—along with fellow Canadian vocalist Sass Jordan, who also hit the apex of her popularity during the same period—is among the best yet sorely underrated female Hard Rock singers of all time and seriously deserved higher, longer-lasting recognition.