Thursday, 27 June 2013


A Plea to My Musician friends: Please stop recording such great albums!

So, this week began with Kodaline's album. It's nice. It's a bit superficial and I thought it might be more of a grower. Too late, Poltergeist's album took over my IPod. Think of a 90s Britpop version of Krautrock and that comes slightly near to what this instrumental album is like. Then, thanks to an FB friend, I discovered Pearl Handled Revolver. Intrigued by the band name, I looked them up and like the fusion of blues rock with a singer that sounds like Lemmy with throat cancer. The bummer? They're playing London's Borderline tonight! Sometimes, fate is a cruel mistress. However, an album dropped on the mat that trumps the lot;  Shineback's Rise Up Forgotten, Return Destroyed; let's just call it Shineback's album ;)

I don't do music reviews (I don't do movie reviews anymore which is another sad story). I'm not great at reviewing albums as I have no technical musical ability to speak of but I can relate how an album makes me feel. If you want a proper music review, see my friend Chris McGarel. He is the music journalist of our time. Don't just take my word for it. Actually, you'll have to as I can't be arsed to look up a link.

So, Shineback's album. I loved Tinyfish - a tiny prog band with exceptional talent, not those little fishes that nibble the dead skin from your feet in booths stuck in the middle of malls. That's Creepy. No, Tinyfish was fronted (as in they had a lead singer) by Simon Godfrey. I was hoping that Shineback would have ended up being pants so that I couldn't rave on about it. It would somehow seem disloyal to Tinyfish, but...bugger, the kid went and made a hugely enjoyable album.

I expected more of the same that I'd heard through the Tinyfish material. What I got was a similar pleasant "WTF?" that reminded me of listening to Devin Townsend's Epicloud for the first time (you know, how can an album be so over produced but still very good? Epicloud dis that). I was a bit floored by Simon's direction. It's a bit like DBA - pop prog.'s not really prog (we could argue this, as it has a ten minute track that can easily fall into the P bracket). At least with DBA, it was spot the Yes moment, or The Buggles. With Shineback, the lyrical format resembles Tinyfish, but anything else - forget it.

This is an album that prog loving Fathers can listen to, without fear that their kids are going to whinge. You could pretend that it's the new Justin Bieber album but that would be a stretch. It does go a bit Blade Runner on track 14 which is never a bad thing.

It has some top quality guest stars on it including Matt Stevens.

Shineback gets a whopping, but not incredulous 10/10 from me!

Buy the album here: