Ginger Wildheart & The Sinners “S/T”
Having seen the band do a fabulous set at 2000 Trees (see review here) we were really excited to hear this album. Our main query was whether they would have been able to capture the genuine sense of bonhomie and love for music that was so apparent live, on ‘tape’.
Opening song “Wasted Time” is a great example of the good times evoking, simple rock n roll, that really makes this album such a joy. It just chugs along in a manner which grabs you and indeed makes you realise that time spent listening to good music like this is never wasted time. It’s followed up by “That Smile” which has an intro that reminds us of ‘The Last Train To Clarkesville’ for some reason… and like the Monkees best tunes, this is just a great pop tune wrapped in a rock n roll song. It’s just god damn fun and has a hook and melody that will stick in your mind for a long time.
This is surely the most anthemic collection of songs that Ginger has been involved in and it reaches a real peak with “Footprints In The Sand” a simply sublime little power pop rocker. But even that is outdone on the charm offensive by the delightful “Lately, Always” a song that should be played on radios around the world.
Songs such as “Dirty Water” and “Six Years Gone” have an almost country rock n roll sound to them. There’s a good old boys feel that has you picturing the band playing them on a stage in an American spit and sawdust bar. It will be interesting to see how Wildhearts fans react to this album as it is somewhat different to that bands output. “Work In Progress” starts with a bit more of that off kilter vibe but it soon falls into the kind of bar room band track you’d expect from The Dog’s D’Amour or The Quireboys (a band Ginger was briefly in). The album takes another turn with the surprisingly mature sound of “Not The Staying Kind” which is about as far removed from the punk rock of The Wildhearts as you can get. It is, however, another brilliant tune with a country pop sound that you could imagine being picked up by radio and being huge (well it would if radio could actually spot a decent tune!).
Ginger has always been a bit of a musical chameleon, but he really has struck gold with this record. It’s a step sidewards from some of his previous output, but one where he somehow seems to be more at home and hopefully at peace than ever. It’s a reminder of the pleasure that can be derived from keeping things simple and delivering a set of songs that will just bring a great deal of pleasure to people’s lives… which can never be a bad thing.