Producer Dennis McKay worked with guitar giants Tommy Bolin and Mick Ronson (and later even prima diva Whitney Houston), and he ups the horsepower on Hang on for Your Life, driving these rocky cornfield boys further into the AOR commercial zone. The hell-bent title track of Shooting Star's sophomore sizzler is an obvious and enjoyable clip of after-work blue-collar rock. "Breakout" (not a reference to the complexions of this sextet's sizable Midwestern teen audience) also hit the airwaves and runs along the same predictable lines. The humane "Flesh and Blood" and the plaintive "Hollywood" reiterate the heartfelt intensity of the gleaming debut, while "Teaser" may pay homage to the late, lamented Bolin. The valleys between the aforementioned peaks in Hang on for Your Life are decent enough and not too long. Recorded at Randy Bachman's Legend studios, this is another solid album by a fine band that never scaled the heights with its peers in Journey and REO Speedwagon.
-STONE, Cheap Trash NYC