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Friday, 24 March 2023

Chris Church - Radio Transient


Have you got a minute to talk about Chris Church? He is possibly the most covered artist on I Don't Hear A Single and the only one who has been written about by all three of us. There is a reason for this. He never makes the same album twice, but always comes up with something that is more than interesting.

This is so much so that if you listened to just one album of his, you would get the wrong impression, love it or not. Over recent times we've had albums of Power Pop, Indie Rock, Lo-Fi and out and out Raw Rock. Radio Transient is probably his poppermost yet.

I have to admit to being a massive fan of Limitations Of Source Tape, my old Power Pop fascination won't let go, but this is even more accessible. At times you taken into a land of Hall and Oates and Todd Rundgren. There's plenty of jangle too. 

You will already have been given a hint with the wonderful Gong 'Til We Go and its hilarious video, well if you though that was catchy, just wait until you hear One More Chance To Get Over You, a killer song that underlines that you don't need pace to Jangle and adds a wonderful Guitar solo from Bill Lloyd.

Already In It is very much in the Pop Rock territory of Rundgren with its driving Bass line. Church has also not lost his lyrical bite either. I Think I Think I Like You opens with the line "You say you like me too much, well I do too."

I Don't Wanna Dance Wanna Dance With Me opens with "Every time I make it to the floor You strike a juxtapose. You’re in the corner with your too fast friends, worried about each others’ clothes." and again what a driving bass line.

It is not all Pop Rock though. There's a great vocal arrangement on Gotta Go, Gotta Ramble, a song that you can imagine on a mid 80s Film Soundtrack. Far Too Late has that 80s feel too, a Chris Church ballad, whatever next? 

But every Chris Church throws up a surprise and this time it is GCRT which has a real urgency with its rapid fire vocal. I'm also reminded a little of Alex Lifeson's later 80's Rush work instrumentally. It is an unusual opener, very 80s US New Wave, but highly effective.

There is also sterling drum work from Nick Bertling as ever and more angelic vocals from Gretchen's Wheel's Lindsay Murray. Isn't it time for a new album Lindsay? It is especially wonderful to hear Church jangling again.

Radio Transient is Chris Church's most accessible album yet, splendidly produced by Lori Franklin. It may just turn him into a Pop Star. Then again, his next album will probably be his solo Prog album. I doubt you will hear anything better this year. Highly Recommended.

You can listen to and buy the album here. It is also available at the Big Stir Records site here and all good record stores etc.


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