2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Evocative Enchanting Better Than Just An 80s Throwback,
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This review is from: Nocturne (Audio CD)
I agree with JT Lowe's initial review in many ways (and interestingly I too found this gem whilst stumbling through You Tube).
What John Tatum has managed to achieve with Nocturne is to present an in your face throwback to "some" great 80s sounds, but it's so well produced, and so nicely arranged, that I think the term throwback is a bit unfair.
Sure there is a wide range of influences and inspirations from the likes of The Cure, Joy Division, Talk Talk - BUT for an album that draws on such definitive noises from the past, it stands up so well in the inevitable comparisons, and sounds superior in may ways to so much chart material of the last few years that it's easily EASILY in my top 5 of 2012.
The synths are warm and full of reverb. The guitars chime and ring. The bass is a bit more jazz than pop in places. The riffs are uncluttered and effective. The vocals are smooth and ethereal, but always with a strong melody. Nocturne almost sounds like shoegaze in places, but although the drums are simple and beat along like you've got your arms out and your head down, those beats have got the nodding head factor all over. There is also a lot of air in the recordings - it feels large and spacious, and it will fill your head and make you realise that if anything, nobody back in the 80s created an album this consistent or good sounding, even if the noises that predate this recording were being used in earnest for the first time.
It's an "albums album" - no big hit singles (who cares), but all great tracks and no filler.
Well conceived Mr Tatum.