SARGANT FURY was a band based in Germany that featured future THRESHOLD singer Andrew “Mac” McDermott. Their debut “Still Want More” came out in 1991, it was based in a Melodic Hard Rock and AOR style. While there’s no lack of talent, their debut didn’t have the outstanding songs that would get them as much as attention as they would have liked.
They fit in with bands like Firehouse, Alias, Mr. Big, Giant, The Storm and other bands of that nature that formed in the very late 80’s and early 90’s. And like those bands, had a tough time finding an audience in places like the United States. They had more success in their home country and other part of the world.
I REALLY wanted to like this album, and there’s a lot about it that I DO like, but the lack of imagination and direction made this an average affair in my opinion. What saves it are the band members, they’re all great players, McDermott is a great singer too, hence the frustration that it didn’t have that “spark” needed for this style.
What am I talking about? Well, again, in MY opinion AOR and Melodic Rock have to have the catchy chorus and hooks. It’s very easy to fall into cliche’-ridden songs when your singing about relationships for an entire album. Take Journey for instance, you can remember almost everyone of their songs because of the hooks. It’s not easy to do, and SARGANT FURY’S debut suffered from what so many albums do, the lack of “radio-friendly” songs.
Now, if you just like the AOR Melodic Format and the style of rock, this is a great album, they do a lot of things right, which again frustrated me when. They played a little heavier than their peers and are just on the edge of doing great things.
The German band with a British singer Andrew “Mac” McDermott, SARGANT FURY came out of the gates with a solid effort in 1991 “Still Want More” that showed there’s immense talent in the group. “Little Fish” would come out a couple years later in 1993 when their form of Melodic Rock Hard was more underground in the States, but still fairly popular in other parts of the world like Japan.
“Little Fish” starts off heavier and with more focus than their debut. “Out” and “New Direction” already showed the band is more serious and has made improvements in their overall tightness as a band. Their sound is more reminiscent of the band THUNDER this time around, another Hard rock that got their start around the same time as SARGANT FURY.
What SARGANT FURY tended to lack was the ability to nail down the big chorus. So why not cover a band like ABBA who, for better or worse, wrote some of the most memorable songs ever? They took “Eagle” from ABBA and made it their own track that was released as a single.
“T.T.A.” was an ass-kicker that really showed the band’s skills, you get the feeling they could get even heavier if provoked. “Goodbye” went in the complete different direction as a ballad with mostly piano, vocals and some strings.
The album ends on the promising song “Tomorrow”, which I thought was actually one of the stronger tracks on the album. Throughout the album there’s great compositions and major improvements from their debut.
While they avoided the “sophomore slump”, the album wasn’t as strong as say the album from HARDLINE or THE STORM who put out album in that overall time frame. My conclusion is that SARGANT FURY are very talented, but still havn’t had the songs that put them on that next level.
SARGANT FURY’S final album in 1995 came at a time when music, especially Rock was in a strange period of Post Grunge and Alternative. From what you can find online, it sounded like the ideas were drying up and this album was some leftover stuff and a couple covers, Michael Sembello ‘s “Maniac” and Bad Company’s “Can’t Get Enough”.
Both covers are solid for what it’s worth, and I wouldn’t say the album is an afterthought. The song “Best I Can” is one of the best tracks they’ve recorded. “Lucky Day” was near the end of the album, but it’s slightly modernized feel could have been a pathway forward for the band.
There are more ballads than their last album, but it’s generally a really good Rock album. The band is still playing at a top-notch clip and have nothing to be ashamed of there.
Still it wasn’t enough to keep the band together and and without such label support SARGANT FURY called it a day. Lead singer Andrew “Mac” McDermott would go on to from the British Prog Metal band THRESHOLD. He passed away from kidney failure in 2011. Founding member and bassist Bauke De Groot passed away after a long battle with cancer in August 2021.
I actually liked this last album more than the previous two for what it’s worth. I don’t know if they were just throwing more out there and experimenting more or what it was. Don’t let any poor reviews move you away from this album.