Wishing Tree Records [Release date 22.03.19]
Kevin Armstrong was a something of a ‘go to’ guitarist in the 1980′s working with Bowie, Iggy Pop, Morrissey, Prefab Sprout, Thomas Dolby and many more.
A name that will have gone under most radars, he played in Bowie’s Live Aid band and on the single Dancing In The Street (1985), on the first Tin Machine album (1989), collaborated with him on the Absolute Beginners soundtrack (1986), and on Outside (1995).
He also played on Thomas Dolby’s first two albums, Prefab Sprout’s Steve McQueen (1985), Iggy Pop’s Blah-Blah-Blah (1986), and Morrissey’s sophomore solo album Bona Drag (1990).
But it’s not just his six string talents that are sought by an even wider range of stars from Roy Orbison to Eno, Grace Jones to Paul McCartney, and from Sandie Shaw to Alien Sex Fiend, with his writing talents extending to co-writing.
And his own versions of several of those collaborations appear here – the title track of Bowie’s Outside album, the Tin Machine song ‘Run’, and two original songs Morrissey turned into ‘He Knows I’d Love To See Him’ and ‘Oh Phony’.
With the skull emblazoned album sleeve, I wasn’t sure what to expect perhaps something angular, and aggressive? But no, it’s actually a highly melodic collection that probably sits somewhere between Prefab Sprout and Be Bop Deluxe. There’s some excellent guitar work throughout, and Armstrong’s wistful vocals are ideally suited to the material. And as for the ‘covers’, they take on completely different forms in his hands, which is equally refreshing.
A collection that merits and rewards repeated listening. ****
Review by Pete Whalley
The latest Facebook Live session from Canadian singer-songwriter Josh Taerk was streamed on Sunday 22 November.
More about Josh: http://getreadytorock.me.uk/blog/?s=%22Josh+Taerk%22
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 15 November 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 17 November 2020
Listen in to Get Ready to ROCK! Radio…
Click the appropriate icons at the top of the page.
Featured Albums w/c 23 November (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 JEFF SCOTT SOTO Wide Awake (In My Dreamland) (Frontiers)
12:00-13:00 LAZARUS DREAM Alive (Pride & Joy Music)
14:00-16:00 RONAN FURLONG The King Of Leaves (Thoroughbred Music)
Power Plays w/c 23 November (Mon-Fri)
L.A. GUNS All That You Are (Golden Robot Records)
THE DUST CODA Limbo Man (Earache)
EBBA BERGKVIST & THE FLAT TIRE BAND 68 Twin (indie)
IRON SAVIOR Souleater (AFM Records)
IVY GOLD This Is My Time (indie)
Tweets by Get Ready to ROCK!