Home > Genres > 80s Hair Bands > Europe


Advertising Information for vagmusic

Europe is a Swedish hard rock band originally conceived as a progressive rock group, but changed into a melodic pop-metal style to gain airplay. The band was originally named Force and was formed in 1979 in Upplands Väsby, Stockholm. It featured Joey Tempest (vocalist/keyboardist), John Norum (guitarist), Peter Olsson (bassist) and Tony Reno (Drummer). After sending some demos to recording companies, the band was told that for being published they should cut their hair and sing in Swedish. Two years later, Olsson left the band and was replaced by John Levén. Soon, Levén joined Yngwie J. Malmsteens’s band rising force and Marcel Jacob (former Rising Force’s bassist) joined force. Due to differences with Malmsteen and Levén, Jacob and Levén returned to their original bands.

In 1982, Rock-SM held a Swedish rock talent contest where Tempest's girlfriend entered the group. During the contest the band was forced to change its name to Europe. Europe won the contest, against 4000 more bands, and was rewarded with a record deal. Tempest won the individual award for Best Lead Singer, and Norum won the award for Best Guitarist. In 1983 Europe released their self-titled debut album which had good sales in Sweden and Japan (where the single "Seven Doors Hotel" became a Top 10 hit). In 1984, Wings of Tomorrow was released and with its single “Open Your Heart” they were able to get an international contract from CBS Records. Keyboardist Mic Michaeli was soon recruited to play in live concerts, and became an official member of the band shortly after. All together, Tony Reno was replaced by Ian Haugland because he was slacking during rehearsals.

In 1986, Europe released The Final Countdown. The album presented smoother pop melodies and Michaeli’s keyboards took a prominent role as they provided the main riff in the title track that became number 1 in 26 countries. The ballad "Carrie" reached number 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the USA and the album sold more than 6 million copies. John Norum decided to leave Europe and try a solo career; his place was taken by Kee Marcello. In 1988, the next album, Out of this world, was released selling two million copies. In 1992 Europe released their album, Prisoners in Paradise, but the record did not receive much media attention. The band went on tour and after finishing they decided to take a long break. Europe reunited and in 2004 they released their brand new album Start from the Dark (featuring Final Countdown’s line up) which received good reviews.

Back to 80s Hair Bands