Thursday, 29 September 2016

REVIEW: LOCH NESS MONSTERS AND MOTHERSHIPS [Cult of Wedge]

Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! You have to give it to Pete Hackett. The Rowley Regis based singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist has previously delivered some impressive albums with such memorable titles as "Tape Recorders Changed Everything", "A Selection Of British Sea Songs" and "Another Ten Songs About Death, Hurt And Misery" via the musical vehicle that is (also) curiously named Cult of Wedge.

"Loch Ness Monsters And Motherships" - their sixth studio album - is released later this week and is yet another commendable collection of clever and witty lyrics bundled with some exceptional tunes. This is certainly the most commercially appealing recording that Pete Hackett has put out to date yet it retains the charm and nuances of its predecessors. The ten songs are instantly likeable, replete with some top notch guitar work and synth touches. From opener "That Song Last Summer" through to final track "Lovers Lane", there is a lovely retro feel to this album with fond recollections and reminiscences of days past and plenty of references to the local landscape.

There plenty of styles to be found here with the pure power pop of "When I Was Young" (Pete told me recently that this song was written as "a polar opposite" to "When I Was A Boy") mingled nicely with the sublime "Miss America" having a classy Americana tinged country feel to it and the words: "She's got Skynyrd and The Eagles on the radio" throughout. "Oh Lindsay" is a lovely sentimental look back to 1979, affectionately remembering "buying Spangles from the corner shop" et al. "Wish Ourselves Away" has a nice acoustic feel to it whilst "Shine On Me" is another feel good anthem in the making, with a succinct Blues touch to it. Yet, in amongst all these guitar driven gems is "Conspiracy Girl", a moody, pulsating song with a smooth drum and bass vibe to it, adding another dimension an album that is another example of the unsung local talent who is Pete Hackett a.k.a. Cult of Wedge. Yours Truly KJS has no hesitation in suggesting that you invest the £4.99 asking price and join me in enthusing over this well crafted LP. [9/10]

Track listing: "That Song Last Summer" ~ "When I Was Young" ~ "She's A Witch!" ~ "Miss America" ~ "Oh Lindsay" ~ "The Day You Left Town" ~ "Wish Ourselves Away" ~ "Shine On Me" ~ "Conspiracy Girl" ~ "Lovers Lane"

"Loch Ness Monsters And Motherships" by Cult of Wedge is released on Friday 30th September 2016 and can be ordered in download format via this link thus:

cultofwedge.bandcamp.com/album/loch-ness-monsters-and-motherships

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends "Loch Ness Monsters And Motherships" by Cult of Wedge to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 29-Sep-2016

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

RECOMMENDED: HOW MUCH MORE? [Ivory Tower Project]

Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! Back in June 2012, Yours Truly KJS reviewed the rather nice album "Red Hot" by Ivory Tower Project for elobeatlesforever (elobf). The New York based outfit, headed up by Mark Regula alongside Tony Novarro, has been somewhat busy in the ensuing four years and have ended their hiatus apparent with the digital release of their new album "How Much More?" back on 16th July with a physical release planned to follow in the months of early 2017.

It will therefore come as no surprise to you that elobeatlesforever (elobf) will also be reviewing "How Much More?" soon! The album can be purchased in the meantime via these links thus:

www.cdbaby.com/cd/ivorytowerproject
www.amazon.co.uk/Much-More-Ivory-Tower-Project/dp/B01HUVXUB2
www.amazon.com/Much-More-Ivory-Tower-Project/dp/B01HUMIWTQ
itunes.apple.com/us/album/how-much-more/id1130591298
itunes.apple.com/gb/album/how-much-more/id1130591298

Trax: "How Much More?" (Alternate Version) ~ "The Ides of March (Et Tu Brute?)" [Alternate Version] ~ "Gotcha'" (Club Mix) [Alternate Version] ~ "Ring Around Rosie" (Alternate Version) ~ "Way Too Late" (Full Length Remix) ~ "Always" (Alternate Version) ~ "When Friends Become Lovers" ~ "Please Tell Me" (Alternate Version) ~ "Woman Of The Times" (Alternate Version) ~ "Burning" (Full Length Remix) ~ "Surf Song" ~ "You Can See It In My Eyes" (Remix) ~ "Le Dare Un Anillo A Rosi" ~ "My Name" (DJ Distortion Remix)

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends "How Much More?" by Ivory Tower Project to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 27-Sep-2016

Saturday, 24 September 2016

CAUGHT LIVE [2]: MORGANISATION @ THE ARTRIX 23/09/16

Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! Time really does fly these days. It's now just over a year since Yours Truly KJS ventured over to Birmingham to see Morganisation make their live debut. Fast forwarding to 2016, the opportunity to go see Dave Scott-Morgan's lively quintet perform at the homely Artrix Theatre in Bromsgrove last night [Friday 23rd September] - was certainly one not to be missed.
The ELO influence pervaded all night ...
But first, mention must needs be made of the wonderful support provided by Indica Campbell - daughter, of course, of UB40's Ali. The talented songstress - more than ably assisted on stage by guitarist and cohort Stuart Toogood - delivered an impressive roster of songs comprising original compositions such as "I Can Never Love You Again" and "I'm Just Me" alongside covers of Nine Inch Nail's "Hurt" and the Amy Winehouse anthem "Valerie". This was a confident and astute performance by Indica, promising much for the future. Definitely one to watch!
Sultry Support: Stuart Toogood and Indica Campbell ...
In a word or three, Morganisation were fantastic! Dave Scott-Morgan has managed to fashion an entertaining and talented band alongside wife Mandy, judging by the quality of this multi-media, anecdote and music filled show. In fact, it is more accurate to describe Morganisation as a family unit rather than simply as a band. Family in the sense of their roots in 'Brum Beat' history and family in the sense of the way they interacted and came across to the healthy audience. We were treated to a balanced set of fifteen songs which not only paid homage to DSM's own musical heroes in Buddy Holly, The Beatles and Bob Dylan but also managed to include a suitable proportion of Jeff Lynne penned ELO classics as well as some Morganisation gems of their own. Two songs from 2012's classy "Across The Divide" plus a quartet of tracks from new album "Bubbles" - due a full release on Saturday 26th November - meant that all the bases were covered in show that literally was over too soon. The intricate guitar craft of Alex Lowe again caught the eye, blending nicely with the impressive percussion of Jack Rosa and keyboard antics of Alan Smith. Dave and Mandy are really and truly a couple and they manage to convey that beautifully within their recollections, onstage discourse and musicianship. I can't pick a fave because they were all fab!

Fans of ELO/Jeff Lynne should also pay attention to Morganisation, both when they can be caught live and from their recorded output. We do indeed look forward to "Bubbles" and, if you can't wait a couple of months, why not purchase the seven [7] pre-release tracks here to whet your appetite?
A benediction - Morganisation style!
Morganisation performed: "Benediction" ~ "Love's Made A Fool Of You" (Buddy Holly) ~ "That's What They Say" (Buddy Holly) ~ "Every Little Thing" (The Beatles) ~ "Telephone Line" (ELO) ~ "Ball & Chain" ~ "All You Need Is Love" (The Beatles) ~ "Black Dog Day" ~ "Knower" ~ "Don't Think Twice" (Bob Dylan) ~ "Are You Ready" ~ "Gibraltar Farm" ~ "Mission Impossible" ~ "Mr. Blue Sky" (ELO) ~ "Rock 'n' Roll Is King" (ELO)
Getting Morganised ...
Morganisation are: Dave Scott-Morgan [Lead vox/guitars] ~ Mandy Scott-Morgan [Vox/percussion] ~ Alan Smith [Keyboards/backing vox] ~ Alex Lowe [Guitars/backing vox] ~ Jack Rosa [Bass/Caj√≥n]
You can find out more about Morganisation, their new album "Bubbles" and those forthcoming gigs via their official web site thus:


elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends Morganisation and Indica Campbell to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELO & Jeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 24-Sep-2016

Friday, 23 September 2016

25th ELOBF GIG GUIDE: Q4 2016

Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! Autumn into Winter 2016 means that once again it's "Time" for the latest elobeatlesforever (elobf) Quarterly Gig Guide #25! Please find a selection of events below [with more to follow when confirmed] between Saturday 1st October and Saturday 31st December [Q4] 2016 plus some artist links for you to peruse thus:

Thursday 6th October
6th Annual Trevor Burton Charity Show @ The Roadhouse, Birmingham
Tickets: £8.00 each [advance] or £10.00 each [door]

Friday 7th October
The ELO Experience @ The Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock
Tickets: £22.00 each [*plus booking fee]
boxoffice.wlct.org/stageitweb/select_seats.aspx?perfid=683

Saturday 8th October
Roy Wood @ The Forum Theatre, Billingham
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
forumtheatre.ticketsolve.com/shows/873557362/events/roy-wood

ELO Again @ The Robin 2, Bilston, Wolverhampton
Tickets: £15.00 each [advance] or £16.00 each [door][*plus booking fee]
www.therobin.co.uk/whats_on/giginfo.asp?gigid=4462

Sunday 9th October
Record & CD Fair @ The Robin 2, Bilston, Wolverhampton
Admission: £1.00 each
www.therobin.co.uk/whats_on/giginfo.asp?gigid=4586

Ricky Cool & The In Crowd @ The Brasshouse, Birmingham
Free entry
www.brasshousebirmingham.co.uk/whats-on

Thursday 13th October
Roy Wood @ The Memorial Hall & City Hall, Sheffield
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.sheffieldcityhall.co.uk/events/Roy-Wood-2016

Friday 14th October
The ELO Experience @ The Palace Theatre, Redditch

Saturday 15th October
Judie Tzuke @ The Gatehouse Theatre, Stafford
Tickets: £21.00 each [*plus booking fee]
www.staffordgatehousetheatre.co.uk/en-GB/shows/judie-tzuke/songs-and-stories

Sunday 16th October
Roy Wood @ The Alban Arena, St. Albans
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/st-albans-events/the-alban-arena/roy-wood

Friday 21st October
Roy Wood @ The Pavilion Theatre, Bournemouth
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/bournemouth-events/BournemouthPavilion/roy-wood

Mike Sheridan's Friday Nite Dance @ Wootton Wawen Social Club. Henley-in-Arden

Saturday 29th October
Bev Bevan's Zing Band @ The Palace Theatre, Redditch
Tickets: £20.00 each [*plus booking fee]

Sunday 30th October
Roy Wood @ The Palace Theatre, Westcliffe-on-Sea
Tickets: £27.00 to £31.50 each [*inc. booking fee]
southendtheatres.org.uk/Online/palace-theatre/roy-wood

Friday 4th November
The ELO Experience @ The Regent Theatre, Stoke-on-Trent

Saturday 5th November
Quill @ Huntingdon Hall, Worcester
Tickets: £20.00 each [*plus booking fee]
www.worcesterlive.co.uk/events_review.asp?eid=453059636

Sunday 6th November
Roy Wood @ The Corn Exchange, King's Lynn
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.kingslynncornexchange.co.uk/event/roy-wood-1078

Friday 11th November
Explosive Light Orchestra @ The Fleece, Bristol
Tickets: £13.00 each [*plus booking fee]
thefleece.co.uk/events/explosive-light-orchestra

Saturday 12th November
Roy Wood @ The Playhouse, Whitley Bay
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/whitley-bay-events/playhouse-whitley-bay/roy-wood

Sunday 13th November
Andy Fairweather Low & The Low Riders @ The Robin 2, Bilston, Wolverhampton
Tickets: £20.00 each [advance] or £22.00 each [door][*plus booking fee]
www.therobin.co.uk/whats_on/giginfo.asp?gigid=4603

Friday 18th November
Quill @ The Civic Centre, Brierley Hill
Tickets: from £10.00 each [*plus booking fee]
tickets.bhillcivic.co.uk/boxoffice/book/1011

Mike Sheridan's Friday Nite Dance @ Wootton Wawen Social Club. Henley-in-Arden

Saturday 19th November
Roy Wood @ St. Andrews Hall, Norwich
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]

Thursday 24th November
Raymond Froggatt @ The Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock
Tickets: £17.50 each [*plus booking fee]
boxoffice.wlct.org/stageitweb/select_seats.aspx?perfid=632

Saturday 26th November
Quill @ The Prince of Wales Theatre, Cannock
Tickets: £18.00 each [*plus booking fee]
boxoffice.wlct.org/stageitweb/select_seats.aspx?perfid=649

Sight 'n' Sound @ The Nest, Cannock
Free entry
www.facebook.com/groups/sight-n-sound

Monday 28th November
Roy Wood @ The Orchard Theatre, Dartford
Tickets: from £32.00 each [*plus booking fee]
orchardtheatre.co.uk/Online/events/roy-wood-million-sellers

Friday 2nd December
ELO Again @ The Lyceum Theatre, Crewe
Tickets: £23.50 each [*plus booking fee]
crewelyceum.co.uk/Online/elo-again-tribute-show

Sunday 4th December
Roy Wood @ The Embassy Theatre, Skegness
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/skegness-events/embassy-theatre/roy-wood

Thursday 8th December
Roy Wood @ The Robin 2, Bilston, Wolverhampton
Tickets: £20.00 each [advance] or £22.50 each [door][*plus booking fee]

Friday 9th December
Roy Wood @ The Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool, Merseyside
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.seetickets.com/event/roy-wood-and-his-band/philharmonic-hall

Saturday 10th December
Explosive Light Orchestra @ The Redhouse, Merthyr Tydfil
Tickets: £15.00 each [*plus booking fee]
www.redhousecymru.com/events/explosive-light-orchestra

Sunday 11th December
Roy Wood @ The Corn Exchange, Ipswich
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/ipswich-events/corn-exchange/roy-wood

Monday 12th December
Roy Wood @ The Hawth Theatre, Crawley
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/crawley-events/hawth-theatre/roy-wood

Tuesday 13th December
Roy Wood @ Assembly Hall, Worthing
Tickets: £29.00 each [*plus booking fee]
www.seetickets.com/event/roy-wood-and-his-band/assembly-hall

Thursday 15th December
Roy Wood @ The Picturedrome, Holmfirth
Tickets: £20.00 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/holmfirth-events/holmfirth-picturedrome/roy-wood

Friday 16th December
Mike Sheridan's Friday Nite Dance @ Wootton Wawen Social Club. Henley-in-Arden
Entry: £5.00 eachwww.facebook.com/Wootton-Wawen-Social-Club

The Trevor Burton Band @ The Queen's Head, Wolverley
Free entry
www.queensheadwolverley.com/events

Saturday 17th December
Explosive Light Orchestra @ Second City Bar & Lounge, Sutton Coldfield
Tickets: £10.00 each [*plus booking fee]
heyevent.uk/event/j7yuqcexnjrx4a/sat-17th-dec-explosive-light-orchestra-tribute-to-elo

Sunday 18th December
Roy Wood @ G Live, Guildford
Tickets: £28.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.ents24.com/guildford-events/g-live/roy-wood

The Trevor Burton Band @ The Grapes, Stafford
Free entry
www.grapesstafford.co.uk/Gig_Diary

Tuesday 20th December
Roy Wood's Rockmas 2016 @ The Symphony Hall, Birmingham
Tickets: £32.50 each [*plus booking fee]
www.thsh.co.uk/event/roy-woods-rockmas-2016

Friday 23rd December
Roy Wood @ The Dome, Doncaster
Tickets: £22.00 each [*plus booking fee]
www.seetickets.com/event/roy-wood-rock-and-roll-band/the-dome

Saturday 24th December
The Upbeat Beatles @ The Robin 2, Bilston, Wolverhampton
Tickets: £12.50 each [advance] or £15.00 each [door][*plus booking fee]
www.therobin.co.uk/whats_on/giginfo.asp?gigid=4576

Wednesday 28th December
The Trevor Burton Christmas Show @ The Roadhouse, Birmingham
Tickets: £8.00 each [advance] or £10.00 each [door]
www.theroadhousebirmingham.com/?q=node/796

Jeff Lynne's ELO
After a stint with classic Birmingham bands The Idle Race and The Move, Jeff Lynne co-founded The Electric Light Orchestra in 1971, one of the most successful groups of the seventies and eighties. Multiple hit singles and best selling albums followed making Jeff's anthemic ELO songs some of the most loved and recognisable of the last four decades. Jeff went on to a successful solo career and worked with many of his musical heroes including Brian Wilson, Paul McCartney, Del Shannon and The Everly Brothers. He also found time to co-found the ultimate 'supergroup' in The Traveling Wilburys, who included pals Tom Petty, Bob Dylan, George Harrison and Roy Orbison in their ranks. Find out what the driving force and creative mind behind ELO is currently up to via his official web site thus:
jefflynneselo.com

Roy Wood
The co-founder of The Move and ELO and the founder of Wizzard, The Helicopters et al will [hopefully] be on the road again during 2015! Find out where to see Dr. Roy Wood and what he is up to with his Rock 'n' Roll Bandvia his official web site thus:
www.roywood.co.uk

The Orchestra
Former members of ELO and ELO Part II: Mik Kaminski, Louis Clark, Eric Troyer, Parthenon Huxley, Glen Burtnik and Gordon Townsend continue to tour the world extensively. Find out where to see them via their official web site thus:

Quill
Legendary Midlands Celtic-tinged rockers Quill, led by the incomparable Joy Strachan-Brain, have built up an impressive live reputation over a four [4] decade span and now feature Tony Kelsey and Abby Brant in their ranks. Find out where to see them via their official web site thus:
quilluk.com

The Trevor Burton Band
Trevor Burton will be performing regularly at various venues in the Midlands with his fantastic band. Find out where on their web site thus:

The ELO Experience
This fantastic Hull based ELO tribute band deservedly won the National UK Tribute Awards in 2013 and they continue to faithfully reproduce classic Electric Light Orchestra hits [and more] live. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:
 www.elotribute.com/giglist

ELO Again
This South Wales based ELO tribute act are now spreading their wings across the UK to faithfully recreate live those ELO hits we all know and love. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

Explosive Light Orchestra [ExpLO]
Not only an ELO tribute act but an original, independent artiste in their own right, The Explosive Light Orchestra - a.k.a. Symphonika - have reproduced the exciting works of ELO at packed theatres and live music venues all around Europe. Find out where to see them now via their official web site thus:

All of the above artistes and shows are endorsed and recommended by Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf). The above gig listing may be amended periodically, as applicable. See you at one or three of the above gigs for a chat?

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] universe ... KJS ... 23-Sep-2016

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

CAUGHT LIVE: BEV BEVAN'S ZING BAND

Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! When Bev Bevan announced back in July that the UK tour dates originally slated for The Move ft. Bev and Trevor Burton in October/November had been cancelled and replaced by selected Midlands dates by Bev Bevan's Zing Band, it was a huge relief to Yours Truly KJS that their gig at The Prince of Wales Theatre in Cannock on the night of Sunday 18th September had been retained. The anticipation of seeing The Move and ELO co-founder perform live for the first time in 2016 was enhanced by the rave reviews and recommendations for support act Ricky Cool & The In Crowd hence a superb evening of entertainment was guaranteed.

And so it was as Ricky Cool and his amazing, energetic sextet wowed the audience with a superb 45 minute set which included the title track from their new album "Flamingo Nights", fantastic covers of "Keep On Running" and "The Good, The Bad and The Ugly", the intriguingly entitled "The Coconut Question", "Watch Your Step" and "Time Is Tight". Visit their official web site and/or go see 'em folks!
From The Move to ELO to Black Sabbath: Bev Bevan [Photos: John Collins/Forever web site
After we had caught our breath in the ensuing interval, it was the turn of Bev Bevan's Zing Band to make their appearance on stage. The 'new' quintet featured the familiar faces of Phil Tree, Tony Kelsey, Abby Brant alongside guest lead vocalist Geoff Turton and those assembled were taken on a musical journey that took in the careers of both Bev and former Rockin' Berries star Geoff, with one or three surprises thrown in for good measure. One would have expected to hear some Roy Wood penned Move classics, some sixties covers - a la the Made In Brum and Stand Up & Rock! theatre shows - and, of course the odd glorious ELO tune - but it was the inclusion of Black Sabbath and Argent classics "Heaven And Hell", "Paranoid" and "Hold Your Head Up" which ensured a pleasant surprise for this writer and many more, especially when you consider that the likes of Roy Orbison and The Beatles were also represented in a set that was, in fact, cohesive and balanced. Add to that the wonderful humour of Geoff Turton as well as the career recollections of the drummer once nicknamed 'Basher' and 'Bullfrog' and you have a great show. Mention also must needs be made for the contributions of stalwart bassist/co-vocalist Phil, guitar wizard Tony and the sublime voice of keyboard queen Abby.

If it is indeed true that The Move have now moved on, then this latest project for Bev Bevan has all the elements required to ensure future success for this most distinguished of legendary percussionists.
Impressive: Ricky Cool & The In Crowd [Photo: John Collins/Forever web site]
Bev Bevan's Zing Band performed: "I Can Hear The Grass Grow" ~ "Fire Brigade" ~ "A Hard Day's Night" ~ "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" ~ "When You Walk In The Room" ~ "Piece Of My Heart" ~ "Hold Me" ~ "He's In Town" ~ "You've Lost That Loving Feeling" ~ "Can't Find My Way Home" ~ "Heaven And Hell" ~ "Paranoid" ~ "Hold Your Head Up" ~ "Running Scared" ~ "Mercury Blues" ~ "California Man" ~ "Blackberry Way" ~ "Mr. Blue Sky" ~ "Don't Bring Me Down" ~ "Gimme Some Lovin'"
Bev Bevan's Zing Band [Photo: John Collins/Forever web site
You can still catch Bev Bevan's Zing Band live in 2016 at these two [2] shows thus:

Friday 23rd September
Aston Wood Golf Club @ Sutton Coldfield ~ [0121] 580 7803
Tickets: £20.00 each [*plus booking fee]

Saturday 29th October
Palace Theatre @ Redditch ~ [01527] 65203
Tickets: £20.00 each [*plus booking fee]
elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends both Bev Bevan's Zing Band and Ricky Cool & The In Crowd to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 20-Sep-2016

Monday, 19 September 2016

REVIEW: STICKY LOVE SONGS [Bubble Gum Orchestra]

"Sticky Love Songs": BGO's most expansive and ambitious release yet ...
Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! If "Beyond Time" was Michael Laine Hildebrandt's take on a time travelling concept album a la ELO's '81 classic "Time", then "Sticky Love Songs", his fifth outing with Bubble Gum Orchestra [BGO] is a full bearing of the soul of this Texas based multi-instrumentalist. The angst, the joy, the heartache and the ecstasy of the thing most souls term 'love' down here on Earth is expressed in an amazing array of twenty new BGO songs within this unbelievably good record.

Subtle strings, haunting guitar riffs, inspired vocal arrangements, considered keys and lush lyrics mean that the listener is drawn into a world where forlorn regret is contrasted by uplifting hope in a familiar arena. For starters, hints of Boston pervade "I'm Not The Man", "Hard Nights" and "You Gave Up On Love" whereas "Every Day Of The Week" oozes The Monkees and Davy Jones. One of my fave BGO songs ever has to be the sublime "I'm No Good For You" with its wonderful Beach Boys vibe. "Like A Merry Go Round" is pure Power Pop. There is so much going on here that the decision to divide this classy effort into two virtual volumes is more than justified. Opener "You Called To Tell Me" is absolutely ELOesque emphasising the fact that underpinning this collection of songs is the undoubted influence of the classic production and sound that Jeff Lynne is famed for at ELO's commercial peak.
Michael Laine Hildebrandt: adding more strings to his BGO bow ...
"Peppermint Smile" is another upbeat track that you can't get out of your head [in a sense] after the first play, another example of top song construction alongside "Firefly's" - with its laid back atmosphere and heavy vocoder content presenting a nice change in tempo. And final song "BGO Motel" is an apt closer too, enticing the listener to hit the repeat button and replay "Sticky Love Songs" all over again. Don't be fooled by the fact that only half of the song titles are quoted within this all too brief review. It's down to just one reason: I've run out of words to adequately sing their praises! They too are sonic pearls awaiting you, there for you to discover yourself.

Yours Truly KJS has had the privilege of playing this record for a few weeks now with the inevitable conclusion that "Sticky Love Songs" is to BGO what "Pet Sounds" is to The Beach Boys"Abbey Road" is to The Beatles and "Out Of The Blue" is to ELO. It's an album which fulfills the concept, potential and ambition of an artiste presenting Bubblegum pop in within an orchestral framework. If The Eagles' "Hotel California" was a place to ultimately escape, then the "BGO Motel" is the place to visit in order to truly experience and feel these "Sticky Love Songs", a soundtrack sometimes of angst and sometimes of hope. Bravo BGO! Bravo MLH! [10/10]
BGO V: Twenty (20) Golden Greats ...
"Sticky Love Songs" by Bubble Gum Orchestra is released on Tuesday 20th September 2016 and can be ordered in CD and/or download format[s] via this link thus:

bubblegumorchestra.com/sticky-love-songs-vol-1-2-2016

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends "Sticky Love Songs" by Bubble Gum Orchestra to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 19-Sep-2016

Saturday, 17 September 2016

CAUGHT LIVE: MIKE & SUZI SHERIDAN

Hello ... Hello ... my old friends ... It's great to see you once again! A trip to go see 'Brum Beat' legend Mike Sheridan has long been on the radar for Yours Truly KJS and elobeatlesforever (elobf). So the 45 mile journey to the homely and friendly Wootton Wawen Social Club to see Mike performing alongside wife Suzi just five (5) miles from away from Stratford-upon-Avon in deepest darkest Warwickshire last night [Friday 16th September] was, for me, truly a real pleasure.

Before we go any further, a brief overview is in order. Mike's musical career is the stuff of legends having fronted The Nightriders with Roy Wood before their departures eventually led to the formation of The Idle Race when a young Jeff Lynne replaced Johnny Mann [who in turn had replaced Roy] and the rest, they say, is history. Mike also formed a fruitful songwriting partnership with Rick Price and in doing so wrote the singles "Ebenezer" and "Alley Alley" for Sight 'n' Sound before they recorded together for Gemini Records in the early seventies before the advent of pseudonym Elmer Goodbody Jnr. and his career beyond. The stories of Mike Sheridan and Sight 'n' Sound will hopefully be the subject of elobf articles in days yet future.

Fast forwarding to 2016, Mike & Suzi Sheridan remain a class act. They effortlessly covered a multitude of classic tunes from the fifties through to the eighties last night, interspersing proceedings with some genuinely amusing jokes, puns, comedy, humour and the odd insult! Suzi's renditions of "Move Over Darling" and "Lately" were fantastic whilst Mike included a nice version of Roy Orbison's "You Got It", the final Nightriders release on Columbia Records: "Don't Turn Your Back On Me" and Geoff Turton/Jefferson's "The Colour Of My Love". This was truly a fun and entertaining night in the best of company! Go see 'em!
In the spotlight: KJS with Mike & Suzi Sheridan ...
Mike & Suzi Sheridan are back at Wootton Wawen Social Club on Friday 21st October and every third Friday in the month thereafter. You can also find out more about Mike Sheridan [and even buy some of his releases] via his official web site thus:

www.mikesheridan.org.uk

elobeatlesforever (elobf) recommends Mike Sheridan to those enlightened folks who enjoy the music of ELOJeff LynneRoy WoodThe MoveThe Idle Race'Brum Beat'The Beatles and related artistes.

Until next "Time" in the ELO [and related] Universe ... KJS ... 17-Sep-2016