Back In The Days


John Diva And The Rockets Of Love

John Diva And The Rockets Of Love backstory

Three suitably tongue in cheek 80s throwback albums in just four years have firmly established JDATROL as the flag bearers for no holds barred modern hair metal.

After bursting onto the scene with 2017’s Live At Wacken, the German based band dropped the magnificent Mama Said Rock Is Dead two years later.

American Amadeus maintained the upward trajectory in 2021 before last year’s The Big Easy confirmed JDATROL as the rising stars of the post-Panther era.

The story goes that frontman John Diva cut his teeth — and made his fortune — as a songwriter to the stars in the late 80s and early 90s.

Claiming to have hatched the idea for Mötey Crüe’s Girls Girls Girls and Bon Jovi’s Keep The Faith, among others, he rode the crest of the hair metal wave.

The demise of his favourite genre led to a few lean years before Diva determined to revive the flamboyant soundtrack to his San Diego youth.

Relocating to Germany armed with a whole host of pop rock standards, he set out to find The Rockets Of Love.

The rest, as they say, is history.

In John Diva’s own words

“As a teenager I loved these kinds of lyrics, which is funny, because as a young person you can’t feel nostalgia yet.

“Somehow that feeling was still conveyed and I always wanted to get to a point in my life where I could write a track like that myself.

“As I got older, I reached that point. 

“I keep coming back to great songwriters like Bruce Springsteen, a great storyteller.

“I wanted to write a lyric that I could take from myself and that would provide a point of reference for others.

“So, my own fiction becomes everyone’s fiction. It’s a real challenge to achieve this with just a few lines.”

The verdict on Back In The Days

Dripping with nostalgia, this festival-ready no-brainer does what it says on the tin.

The slow build verses and triumphant choruses are a perfect example of JDATROL’s 80s cock rock by numbers.

But anyone who grew up with peak Leppard, Whitesnake and the Sunset Strip invasion will be drawn to a thumping hair metal anthem for the ages.

The retro-styled video — think amateur camcorder footage and brief snatches of action — works a treat as the backdrop to Diva’s ditsy lyrics.

And it’s remarkable to see just how far these Reckless Love-lite rockers have come since dropping the band’s deeply unfashionable 2019 debut.

Who knows what Diva really did Back In The Days?

But if it’s anything like this then he lived his best life.

What’s next for JDATROL?

Given the band’s prolific output to date, a new studio album will already be in the works.

But for now the focus is on a 17-date headline tour of Germany starting on March 1.

Latest long player The Big Easy is still available in various bundles — including a CD/LP version with exclusive shirt.