35819-2 Aqua
Produced by Geoff Downes
Released on March 1992
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
35819-2 cover  

A sia had scratched at the door of a comeback with some new material on Then & Now, followed by a live tour in 1990. But it was Aqua that found the band with both feet back in the saddle. Now featuring vocalist John Payne and guitarist Al Pitrelli, Asia borrowed the savvy studio sound of the re-vamped Yes and mixed it with elements of hair metal (courtesy of Payne and Pitrelli). What’s notable about Aqua is how much better it is than Asia’s last few studio albums. If the material isn’t ostensibly better than what you’d find on Alpha or Astra, Asia delivers it with more conviction and energy than anything since their debut. It’s Aqua’s re-energized aura moreso than the music itself that makes this record in many ways a return to form. Geoff Downes’ production is pristine, Payne’s vocals passionate if a tiny bit overwrought, Pitrelli’s guitar gregarious. The magical aspect of Aqua is that no one seems to have told the band they were irrelevant, enabling Asia to make an album worthy of a major label on a minor one. If Asia’s second (or even third) album had sounded this good, they’d still be packing sold-out arenas. Read the review at All Music Guide.

35819-2 inner gatefold
35819-2 inner gatefold

TRACK LISTING

  1. AQUA I    (Geoff Downes)    2:25
  2. WHO WILL STOP THE RAIN    (Geoff Downes/Johnny Warman/Woolfenden)    4:35
  3. LAY DOWN YOUR ARMS    (Geoff Downes/John Payne/Greg Hart)    4:10
  4. HEAVEN ON EARTH    (John Payne/Andy Nye)    4:52
  5. SOMEDAY    (Geoff Downes/Johnny Warman)    5:47
  6. CRIME OF THE HEART    (Geoff Downes/Johnny Warman)    5:55
  7. A FAR CRY    (Geoff Downes/John Payne/Greg Hart/Mitchell)    5:28
  8. BACK IN TOWN    (Geoff Downes/John Payne)    4:07
  9. DON'T CALL ME    (Geoff Downes/Johnny Warman)    4:53
  10. LOVE UNDER FIRE    (Geoff Downes/Greg Lake)    5:13
  11. THE VOICE OF REASON    (Geoff Downes/John Payne)    5:34
  12. AQUA II    (Geoff Downes)    2:09

CREDITS

GEOFF DOWNES -- keyboards, backing vocals
STEVE HOWE -- acoustic guitars, mandolin, pedal steel, electric 12 string, dobro
JOHN PAYNE -- lead vocals, bass, backing vocals, additional guitars
CARL PALMER -- drums & percussion
AL PITRELLI -- lead & rhythm guitars
Nigel Glockler -- additional drums
Anthony Glynne -- additional guitars
Simon Phillips -- additional drums
John Brand -- mixing
Pete Craigie -- engineer
Mike "Spike" Drake -- additional engineering
Gregg Jackman -- additional engineering
Mark Willie -- additional engineering
Rodney Matthews -- artwork

return to ASIA discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US March 1992 Great Pyramid CD/CS 35819 lyric sleeve
UK/FRA 1992 Musicdisc CD 10928  
GER   IRS LP 951959  
US 1994 Rhino CD 71833  
UK 1998 Snapper CD SMMCD 521 digital remaster
JPN 1999? Snapper? CDX TECI-22001 digital remaster w. bonus track,
different track listing
US 2003 Snapper 2CD SMDCD 393 repackaged w. ARIA

 

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