I found much to admire in BBC's 2010 album 'Flaws' and their new release
'A Different Kind Of Fix' delivers yet another laudable compilation. The
largely acoustic ambience of 'Flaws' is substantially swept away in this
collection of twelve new compositions. There is a harder, denser more
abrasive sound in evidence here which looks back to their 2009 debut
'I Had The blues and I Shook Them Loose'. A bold and powerful next step.
Front man Jack Steadman still stands firm on the prow, face to the wind,
keeping the boat steadily on course and coasting over the towering waves.
The music is built for large venues. There is an epic quality creeping into
their writing which suits them well but the strong sense of tunefulness
which has always defined their best work remains intact. Indubitably so.
Things kick off in fine style with opening track 'How Can You Swallow So
Much Sleep'; the gentle dreamy introduction quickly giving way to a fine
driving anthem. Suren de Saram's energetic drums and the intertwining guitars
support a quasi-folksy vocal from Mr Steadman. Around and around it goes.
'Bad Timing' and the splendid 'Your Eyes' keep the pace going until the
perfectly lovely song 'Lights Out, Words Gone' brings things down a tad and
proves to be one of the band's most affecting and memorable performances.
The vocal harmonies are beautifully crafted. A song to be very proud of.
So too with 'Fracture', an echoing lament which tugs at the heartstrings.
It is to final track 'Still', however, which we must turn to hear the album's
very finest moment. A stunning and very moving arrangement for voice and
piano which shows off Mr Steadman's distinctive falsetto at its best.
A haunting and close-to-sublime conclusion to a commendable five star project.
From strength to strength; ever onward and upward, BBC are close to becoming
one of England's national treasures. Don't let the experience pass you by.