Great Metal Albums of 1986: Jack Starr’s Burning Starr- No Turning Back

Alternative Cover

It is very tempting for me to compare the 1986, “No Turning Back” album from Jack Starr’ Burning Starr to the album I visited in the previous post, Jack’s 1984 album with Rhett Forrester, “Out of the Darkness.” It is sorely tempting, especially as Jack bends the six string so easily to his will on both albums. Actually, what’s even more tempting is to say which one I prefer, okay, take the gun away from my head, it’s “Out of the Darkness,” but “No Turning Back” is a pretty cool album as well.

The opening title track does what an opening track should do, it captures your curiosity as to how good the rest of the album is going to be. I think it would have been out of place anywhere else on the album. However, the second track, “Light in the Dark” is a scorcher of a metal tune. A greatly paced tempo with some great guitar work from Jack. It is on this track that you can fully appreciate the vocals of singer Mike Tirelli. Going back to album comparisons, I get the feeling that Mike and Rhett are interchangeable. Their vocals styles are quite similar. Again, that’s not a bad a thing.

One area where this album wins out over the previous album is the power ballad. If I had listened to this album back in the day, “Fire and Rain” would have been included in my top thirty power ballads, easily. The entire band are totally engaged on this one led by some great vocals from Mike and of course, Jack’s magical guitar work. In fact, “Fire and Rain” would most likely break the top twenty and maybe even threaten the top ten. I like it that much.

Burning Starr’s rhythm section of Keith ‘Thumper’ Collins and Mark Edwards let you know they’re part of the band on “Call of the Wild.” The rhythm is strong on this song. Then we come to the song which was on the Metal Sister’s compilation tape, “Road Warrior.” This song brings back great memories of the tape and it’s a cool song, even with Mike’s falsetto vocal but now that I have heard the entire album, it’s not the best song on it.

Three short instrumentals, “Prelude in C-Minor,” “M-1” and the closer, “Coda,” take up a combined total of one minute and fifty four seconds but they serve the purpose of giving a relaxing but well deserved break in the action, while “Coda” ends the album nicely. However, mingled in between those are two filler tracks, “Evil Never Sleeps” and “Path of Destruction.” They’re not bad songs but I don’t miss them when the needle moves to “Avenging Angel.” This is a speedier track but it matches well with the vocals, a good headbanger and the line in the chorus, “Avenge my death, avenge my life!” sticks in the mind during the cool guitar/keyboard trade off. That leads very well to the penultimate track, (it would have been a great closer too), “Run For Your Life.” It’s intro of nearly a minute and a half leads you to believe that it’s going to be another instrumental but everything just explodes and all five members come together magnificently. Jack hammers out another cool solo, actually two as the instrumental part at the end is ace; making it a great way to end things.

Track listing:

  1. No Turning Back
  2. Light in the Dark
  3. Fire and Rain
  4. Call of the Wild
  5. Road Warrior
  6. Prelude in C Minor
  7. Evil Never Sleeps
  8. Path of Destruction
  9. M-1
  10. Avenging Angel
  11. Run for You Life
  12. Coda
Jack Starr’s Burning Starr

Jack Starr- guitar

Mike Tirelli- vocals

Keith ‘Thumper’ Collins- bass

Mark Edwards- drums

David DeFeis- keyboards

In 1986, I was sent a tape of twenty-one good songs, “Road Warrior” from Burning Starr’s “No Turning Back” album being one of them. After listening to the album now, I wish I had listened to it back then.

Next post: Rhett Forrester- Gone With the Wind

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6 Responses to “Great Metal Albums of 1986: Jack Starr’s Burning Starr- No Turning Back”

  1. I’m picking up Dickinson vibes off those vocals on Light In The Dark!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Im not sure the effort goes into album covers that used to …

    Liked by 1 person

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