STYLE: Pop RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 46259-11506 LABEL: Independent FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1
Reviewed by Simon Eden
I guess that Phil Lewis must have a very good mate in Ben Haynes, as although Phil has written all the songs and done the lead vocals, this apparent solo album has been produced by Ben who is credited with doing everything else (ie, playing all the instruments). Sarah Haynes is also credited with doing the "lady backing vocals". Stylistically it is difficult to categorise the album, with retro throwbacks to electronica bands such as OMD and the early 1980s New Romantics in the ballad narratives. Vocoder distorted vocals sound gothic at times combined with simplistic programmed drum loops. Searing electric guitar solos in tracks like "Burn Burn Burn" rip through the musical foundations with their repetitive blues riffs, or in "Sad" have a jazz funk feel. Other tracks have a more contemporary ethereal indie rock style but often with a slightly dark theme with lyrics like "Happiness is just a state of mind it helps me get through the daily grind." The eclectic mix of styles avoids categorising Phil, who recently pitched a single "SAD" (unsuccessfully) at the mainstream, ensures that this album is never less than interesting though those who have followed the Welsh singer/songwriter's previous rock acoustic albums, might be slightly puzzled.
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