Published on May 20th, 2017 | by Justin G.
Johnny Lima: Johnny Lima/Made in California (MelodicRock)
The MelodicRock label gave us some good news earlier this year when they teamed up with rocker Johnny Lima for a 2-disc set that puts his long out of print Johnny Lima and Made in California albums back in fans’ hands. Lima’s debut was originally self-released in 1996 and Made in California was released on the Frontiers label back in 2003.
Lima’s general style, at least on these two albums, is the kind of melodic rock that mainstream radio and MTV used to play constantly until about 1992. You can tell Bon Jovi (especially Slippery When Wet and New Jersey) are a huge influence on Lima, and it sounds like he played his Danger Danger cassettes to death as well. This is not a bad thing at all. Bon Jovi was huge for a reason, and Lima really gets what made those songs work. These two discs are loaded with catchy hooks, melodies for miles, and simple, sweet love songs to go with fun party rock anthems. The lyrics do get pretty cheesy at times, but that’s easy to overlook when the music is this fun.
MelodicRock’s Johnny Lima reissue set gives us the full 1996 Johnny Lima album on disc 1, with a pair of bonus studio tracks. Disc 2 has the full 2003 Made in California album plus two more bonus studio tracks. All of the material has been newly remastered and sounds terrific. The packaging is a single jewel case with a fold-out double tray (and not some lousy digipack, thank goodness).
Between the remastering and the extra tracks, there’s probably enough here for die-hard Johnny Lima fans to consider upgrading their older releases, but the real value is for the rest of us who missed these albums the first time around and want to see what all the hype around Johnny Lima is. If you’re in that category and dig the classic Bon Jovi sound as well as bands like Danger Danger, Trixter and Blue Tears, you’ll want to get your hands on this deluxe Johnny Lima set.
Summary: It's on the pricey side, but it's worth it.