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Extented Mix (Se), december 2009

In  Holland, Belgium and Germany CHINAWHITE are a relatively known name. The band was formed in early 1987 and since 1993, the band have been intact with the same five members. By playing live a lot, they have built up a solid framework that really sounds professional and experienced. It was, however, 1997 as the band finally had the opportunity to release an official CD, a mini-CD "a dragon’s birth". It was more symphonic rock than progressive rock, which the band from the beginning was. To play as much as possible before an audience the band bet the covers and it became songs from e.g. Toto, Whitesnake, Paul McCartney & Wings, Kansas, Journey, Pearl Jam and Gun, which probably colored the music for the band’s first release.  Success did not let up as soon the band was in the studio again, again with Fred Hendrix (Terra Nova) who helped the boys with the album "Breathe fire" which was released in 2000. Now begins a time of turbulence and drummer Hans in ‘t Zandt, builds a reputation as a session drummer and soon gets requests from Vengeance, Cooper Inc., Parris and Mad Max. Don Feltges, CHINAWHITE’s singer, start touring with guitar virtuoso Joe Stump and the other band members also have other commitments, which allows CHINAWHITE take second place for some years.  From 2007, members again devote them self to their old band and recordings of their third album start, which has now been released and has been given the name "Challenges", a title which suited the band’s most recent roller coaster. The album is recorded in their own Studio and I shall start with what is not good with "Challenges" it’s sound. I have heard a demo of some titles which sound better than this and it is primarily the singer Don Feltges, which is the biggest problem. Not  personally, but why did they place him a bit behind all other instruments? This means that you hardly hear the voice, and this affects the potential enormously.  That CHINAWHITE are good musicians is not difficult to hear and if you like bands like Marillion, Threshold, Uriah Heep and other Dutch bands Kayak, Ulysses and The Aurora Project you should absolutely check out CHINAWHITE. The music is good but, unfortunately, the soft vocals make it difficult for me to be able to enjoy this album to the fullest.  With better recording capabilities, this album would have been really good. (Roger)

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