Fresh from a slot opening for the Waterboys recently, Valentine Black delivers a CD sampler of tracks from the forthcoming album due for release later this year.
Valentine Black is the alter-ego and brainchild of Bright Light Fiasco singer and guitarist, Peco McLoughlin.
The sampler fits nicely into the Acoustica/Alt-Country vein and opens with ‘September’s Friend’. It’s a song that hints at leaving the past where it should be left. It’s also nice to see a production where each instrument is given their own room to breathe. Subtle harmonies in the chorus lift the song without having it explode. Nice.
‘Return of the Lotus Eaters’ starts with just Valentine Black, a guitar, his vocals and a shaker. All we’re missing is a scorching day to accompany it. This song has a more memorable hook than the first with some nice guitar work.
‘Retrospect’ slowly builds up but is worth the wait. What strikes me is how the songs are allowed have their own lives and are not overproduced as so often happens. By this track its obvious Valentine Black has developed his own sound and style.
The final track ‘The Curragh Calling’ is being pushed for radio and is currently available for download from www.downloadmusic.ie It’s an uptempo number definitely tipping its hat to the more country end of the genre. This could be a great live track. I dare you not to start tapping your foot!
4.5 out of 6