Round Records [Release date 23.09.16]
I am sure that everyone is aware of the legend concerning blues man Robert Johnson meeting the devil at the crossroads and signing his soul away in return for his musical ability. I always imagine that being a dark, overcast day with an intense negotiation with auld Nick. However the day Ginger Wildheart stopped off at the crossroads must have been a warm summer’s day with blue skies and Beelzebub playing The Monkees in the background. How else can you explain the man’s seemingly unstoppable ability to write the catchiest pop rock on the planet with apparent ease?
Hey Hello! are one of Ginger’s many side projects (does the man ever sleep?) and allow him to indulge in the lighter side of rock. Take opener ‘All Around The World’ for example, if this was sung by one of the many teen sensations churned out by the X Factor it would be the ‘feel good’ hit of the (late) summer. As it is the song is as catchy as norovirus on a cruise ship and will have you singing along with the refrain as soon as you hear the opening bars.
‘This Ain’t Love’ continues the pop onslaught and the cover version of Sailor’s ‘Glass Of Champagne’ is a genius move, the song is perfectly suited to the Hey Hello! sound. Ginger never takes himself or his lyrics too seriously as demonstrated in ‘Kids’. His choice of words in the middle eight section had me laughing out loud!
As with the previous Hey Hello! album, Ginger is happy to take a backseat and let others take the lead vocal role. Following the departure of frontwoman Hollis Malhady from the band, vocal duties were handled by an array of guest vocalists on the recording, however there is no loss of quality from one to another, all put in a great performance.
Other tracks to look out for are ‘Loud And Fucking Clear’ which does get it’s point across and ‘Let’s Get Emotional’, another song with excellent harmonies and melody. Another aspect of the album is the great mix and production, the thump from Toshi’s bass really packs a punch to counter the sweetness of the tracks.
This album is the perfect antidote to all the bad news constantly flying at you via TV and social media. It’s good to laugh and smile occasionally and Hey Hello! Too! will make you do just that. ****
Review by Dave Wilson
David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 BST (GMT+1, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 30 August 2020.
UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 ( BST, GMT+1) as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 8 September 2020.
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