Frontiers Records is pleased to announce the release of MECCA’s anticipated second album «Undeniable » on November 4th in Europe and January 10th 2012 in North America.
Six years in the making « Undeniable » is the culmination of hard work, blood, sweat and tears. Rewind to 2002: the Melodic Rock community is taken by storm by the debut album of a new band named Mecca. Formed by vocalist Joe Vana, he enlisted, among others, the services of former Toto members David Hungate (bass) and Fergie Frederiksen on vocals and close friend and former Survivor founding member Jim Peterik, who contributed masterfully to the songwriting and production of the album.
Mecca created a sonic treasure bringing the energy to drive diamond hard rockers and the finesse to create lush power ballads, all with the texture that, until now, only super-groups such as Journey, Toto or Foreigner could provide. Amazing press responses blessed the album’s release and Joe Vana soon started putting together plans for a follow up album. “I wanted a BAND sound, like the old days where all the guys played together in the room” tells Joe. “We came very close to doing just that… PLUS, I wanted an album Jim Peterik would hear and be proud that he worked so hard mentoring me for so many years. I had a challenge”.
Songwriting started in 2005 between Vana and Swedish guitarist Christian Wolff. In 2007 things really took a ground breaking turn with the songwriting masterpieces that Vana wrote with Swedish Producer/Songwriter/Guitarist Tommy Denander. Vana said: “The writing synergy between Tommy and I has been amazing, we think so much alike in terms of melody and space but sounds very different melodically than what we both have done separately, so it truly is a union of ideas…”. The musical direction soon showed that new heights in Melodic Rock music could be reached. “Since Tommy and Christian were my co-writers” continues Vana “I had parts of theirs from when we wrote the tunes that were stellar and it integrated wonderfully”.
Several problems created bumps in the road, including the death of Vana’s longtime friend and co-producer / engineer Bryan Mitchell which made the completion of the recording process extremely slow. Joe explains: “It took a lot of time to build the right team to produce with me, Mark Alano and Chuck Macak and to get the right combination of guys. I had an opportunity to hand pick a band and I was not going to ruin that! I know I was getting killed on the internet, but I needed to make sure it was ALL correct. The music had to be able to carry the melodies and the lyrical content I had written, this album had to flow correctly and I had a vision sonically I wanted as well… it was not an easy road…. and as far as the songs themselves, it is the best writing Tommy Denander and Christian Wolff have done. They were SO EASY to write with and we make a GREAT team!”.
Vana enlisted the talents of session masters such as Pat Mastellotto (King Crimson, Mr Mister), Tony Levin (Peter Gabriel, King Crimson), along with Denander and Wolff. His core band was also created around Rick Vitek on drums, Brian Moritz on keyboards, Wally Hustin on bass, Eric Ragno on keyboards, Mark Alano on guitar and Joe’s ace in the hole….his son Joey on guitars and backing vocals.
Fast forward to 2011. Mecca II « Undeniable » is finally completed and delivered. The results are breathtaking. According to Vana: “This is a thinking man’s record with a lot of Chicago AOR, Prog and a good dose of West Coast thrown in! You can listen to the album 10 times, and will hear different things each time…”. An album which perfectly melts the outstanding High-Tech AOR approach of Mr. Mister’s “Welcome to the Real World” to the commercial sheer brilliance of Toto’s “The Seventh One”. Oh and… the good news is that Mecca III is underway!
If Mecca I was born to unveil the treasures of the Melodic Rock genre to the unsuspecting public, then Mecca II « Undeniable » sets in stone the gospel of this music with stunning arrangements and unbelievable melodies. Mecca is now here to stay….get converted to their music!!!
The first single – the title-track “Undeniable” – can be streamed in full on the Frontiers Records web radio www.frontiers.it/webradio
Joe Vana: Vocals
Joey Vana: Guitars
Brian Moritz: Keyboards
Paul Pisciotto: Synthesizers
Wally Hustin: Bass
Rick Vitek: Drums
Mark Alano: Guitars