Reviews - Week 39



Singles 1989 – 1992

Matinee Records

Whilst Ian Brodie’s Lightning Seeds were producing hit after hit with glorious light joyful pop rock, this band had the potential to rival them with their own brand of exquisitely likeable music. Sadly unlike the Lightning Seeds, the attempts of Brighter totally passed me by. However years after the band disbanded, Matinee Records have recognised their quality by releasing all the material from their 4 previous releases onto one CD. Do not make my mistake, this time around. Get yourself a copy and really enjoy their well crafted, beautifully written songs. Their talent shines through song after song and unlike many compilations, they gel together well giving this album a very complete all round effect.

A strong track is always a good idea at the beginning of an album, if the would be buyer is going to persist in listening and ‘Inside Out’ does not disappoint. It hooks the listener straight away with crystal clear guitar, vocals and harmonies. It is no wonder that the members of the band have gone on to other highly proficient bands such as Harper Lee, Pinkie and the Trembling Blue Stars. However to do justice in this review I would then have comment on just about every other of the 15 tracks because each in its turn compliments the last. Of course the quiet beautiful strength of ‘Noah’s Ark’ perhaps deserves a special mention and then again ‘Hope Springs Eternal’ can not be left out but where do I stop? Perhaps you should judge for yourself.
Alex Sharkey, Alison Cousens and Keris Howard have moved on and they have pointed me in a direction I want to explore.




Before the judge... Cover

The 55s

Before The Judge Turned Us To Shadow

Sl Records

“Before the judge turned us to shadow” is not the sort of CD that should be listened to quietly through a single earpiece of a Walkman whilst sitting in a stuffy office on a grey December day. It should be played unconfined, loud, and in stereo. However if you do chose the option to listen to the CD by the former method you may just find that the rebellious off-kilter screeches of the 55s improve your day somewhat.

The 55s are a puzzling bunch of people who live in Edinburgh because “The people of Edinburgh…though much the same essentially as most of the peoples of Europe, were more primitive and with them they felt more comfortable and advanced.” The bizarrely named members of the band joined together to form a “rock combo” formed a year ago, and since then have made it their mission to be “a sea change in post-modern entertainment.”

“Before the judge turned us to shadow” contains is simple but unpretensious rock. The hyperactive Ep is filled with guitar driven riffs and off key harmonies which shriek riotously. The distorted warped sound, is surprisingly upbeat. Cymbals crash and guitars wail, and the repeated lyrics quickly find themselves ingrained in the brain.

Rachel Queen





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