Reviewed by Mike Rimmer
Proving that all that glitters isn’t gold, Rick Altizer takes you on a whirlwind journey through all that is glitzy, cheap and nasty in modern culture. Rick throws out his songs like stones, pitched at the hollow, fake, cheaply built icons of modern culture, whilst simultaneously longing for this generation to build with the real gold and silver which will last into eternity. That tension shows in the energetic pop of songs like the TRex influenced “Ray Guns And Plastic Flash”, Blur woo hoo steal “TV Preacher” and incredible opener “Disco Ball” where their shiny singalong surface only covers his prophetic barbed observations. Rick Altizer is the sort of songwriter that should sell millions because he’s capable of writing the catchy pop of “Let It Go” but also an inspirational anthem like “I’ll Say Yes (She Said Yes)” inspired by the Colorado High School shootings last spring. Never reduced to simple cynicism, Altizer’s songs seem to yearn for change and with the ballad “Surrender To You” and pop praise of “You Are Beautiful”, he stretches out beyond the influences of the world that troubles him so deeply. Apart from the groovy guitar work of the legendary Adrian Belew, Altizer plays the instruments, sings and writes the songs. He’s talented, he’s funny but the real kicker is this, ‘Neon Fixation’ is an album that works at two levels. If you want some absolutely stonking flashy rock’n’pop, everything you’d want is here, but scratch at the surface and beneath and there’s plenty of challenging depth to stretch you. Music to think to – whilst leaping about, of course. Rick Altizer is shaping up to be an artist as sharp as Steve Taylor, if you have the ears to hear.
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