(Grinning Dog Records)
Spotted on the MOJO magazine CD celebrating Paul McCartney last year, Nick Capaldi has now prepared an album for release. Already friend of this site Bob Harris has expressed the view that Nick’s music appeals – “ I love the atmosphere of Nick Capaldi’s music. It has a joy to it which is totally infectious and an innocence which is massively endearing,,” Born in Bristol, it was certain BritPop acts that lit Capaldi’s fuse. He sings and plays a number of instruments, has recorded here and in Nashville.
On to the tracks then, as mixed and mastered by Tim Hamill:
Starter cut Mixed Emotions has a blaze of guitars and probably synths before his highish reverbed vocal hits verse bridge and chorus. There is a definite 80s vibe about the song and mix and it’s on the busy side; Disgrace Face has ringing guitars and an emphatic chord path, an intended single seemingly about someone who doesn’t quite fit in. The Bowie tinge jumps out at the listener. Could be an All The Young Dudes-era Bowie song.
Hopin’ & Wishin’ is a folky number, foot-tapping stuff but that keening voice has an almost Herman’s Hermits touch in its tuneful delivery. Quite a lovely melody here and less clutter ; Sign On The Door has angry distorted delayed guitar and a spy film pulse, with edgier treated vocal; The Night Is Rarely Ours jumps across into string-laden balladry with a Spector backbeat.
Made It Up On The Moon uses damped guitar arpeggios to bring us a Duran type tune, maybe the catchiest song on this set. Neon Heart the title cut uses a quasi-reggae beat..well, as Blondie would attempt one and again sounds Duran-ish to this reviewer. Don’t Go Too High is played straight, easily the best vocal performance on the set and which could be the young Peter Noone. No bad thing for a song like this.
Old Pally has terrific drumming and a catchy pop tune ; then it’s Do You Know Why You Cry? with its neat guitar figures and steady tempo, again quite catchy. Onto Tomorrow is more reflective and piano to the fore, should have found a female to duet with on this song, Nick! The collection closes with Adorsha a light stomp singalong kind of tune.
Tuneful pop music sung in a range that doesn’t quite resonate with this hard-bitten listener but there is a happy-go-lucky / sunshine core to all this that will find an audience. A female audience.
(Thanks to Sam G)
Nick Capaldi’s new album ‘Neon Heart’ is released by Grinning Dog Records/Right Track/Universal Music Group on Friday 19th May 2017.
For more information visit Nick Capaldi’s official website here: http://bit.ly/2m36wcd