FLAV MARTIN & JERRY MAROTTA Soul Redemption [Release date 01.03.18]

This debut album from two of rock’s unheralded ‘side men’ blends modern adult rock and traditional world music.

Over his career, Flav Martin has performed with David Crosby, Al Stewart, and Suzanne Vega, and drummer Jerry Marotta with Paul McCartney, Hall & Oates, The Indigo Girls, Sarah MacLachlan, and John Mayer, as well as for a decade with Peter Gabriel.

Aficionados will also be interested to note the album reunites Marotta with Tony Levin – reforming the ‘classic’ rhythm section of much of Gabriel’s solo output.

But, don’t go expecting another ‘Peter Gabriel’, Soul Redemption is one of the most chilled albums you’ll hear this year.  Soft, whispery vocals, soothing grooves, with ‘class’ stamped all over the musicianship.  There an overarching soulful vibe that alternatively blends tropical, Mediterranean, Chanson, and Latin influences.

If you heard this playing in a Starbucks or Costa, you’d be just as likely to come out with a CD as opposed to a latte, macchiato or expresso.   Delicious.  ***1/2

Review by Pete Whalley

CHRIS THOMAS Bound To The Ocean [Release date 07.09.18]

Involved in a couple of bands in the late-90s and early-00s before becoming involved in the In The Flesh Pink Floyd tribute show, Devon-based singer songwriter Chris Thomas made the decision to go solo in 2013.

And after five years of performing self writes and covers acoustically in the South West he’s come up with his easy on the ear debut Bound By The Ocean.

Influenced by the likes of Simon & Garfunkel, The Eagles, Passenger, and John Mayer it’s a pleasant listen with plenty of gentle hooks that’s going to appeal primarily to a BBC Radio 2 audience.  Thomas’s vocals have a pleasing Don Henley-style tone, and while Bound To The Ocean is unlikely to be chart bound, it should sell well at gigs.

Also, a word of praise is merited for the tasteful packaging that includes an environmentally friendly preformed card digipack tray and cork retainer, and an attractive vinyl replica CD.   ***

Review by Pete Whalley

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Power Plays w/c 13 May (Mon-Fri)

WARM RAIN Here Comes The Rain Again (Rain Recordings)
DARWIN Cosmic Rays (indie)
MICHAEL THOMPSON BAND Love & Beyond (Frontiers)
MARQUIS DRIVE Shine On (indie)
YOUR LIFE & MINE Remind To Remember (indie)
EMERALD SUN What becomes Of You (indie)

Featured Albums w/c 13 May (Mon-Fri)

09:00-12:00 JIM PETERIK WORLD STAGE Winds Of Change (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 WHITESNAKE Flesh & Blood (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 BUFORD POPE The Waiting Game (Unchained Records)

Albums That Time Forgot (Mon-Fri)

NEVER THE BRIDE Surprise (2005)

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