Leeds Music Scene

Different Than Before by Ric Neale

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Reviewed on 19th October 2005.

 
 

Different Than Before

By Ric Neale

What a talented bunch of folk Leeds has got in its midst and here's another one. Ric Neale is from the singer songwriter class and on the evidence of this CD he could well be top of it. A warmth and maturity to his sound makes it instantly likeable as if he's saying "come over here, I want to sing you a song or two" and you immediately feel at ease. "Different Than Before" has an almost country vibe (we're not talking sliding guitars, just vocal harmonies) and for your contemporary references there's a distinct comparison with the pace of James Blunt. For a less contemporary reference think Tom Petty or Van Morrison. "Free" doesn't drop the quality one bit and paints a bleaker picture with some heart aching vocal work vaguely reminiscent of Aqualung. It's beautifully produced with some great ideas, particularly as the song picks up with some haunting and sparkling strings. Although pleasant, Neale does not have as distinct a voice as say a Gray, Sting or Blunt but what he lacks vocally he more than makes up for musically and his arrangements are note for note and beat for beat perfect. The only minor downside, but probably not for the Neale purists, is the live version of "Brick By Brick" which although sharing a lot of the qualities of the previous studio tracks isn't quite up to the same high standards. This is a forerunner to his second album "Seemed like a Good Idea at the Time" and on this basis it will be well worth the investment.

 

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On 20th October 2005 at 12:27 Anonymous 2538 wrote...

Cheers for reviewing Ric, Richard. Glad you like it. The final mix of the album will be available very soon. Apparently. Its taken two years to make and has had about every conceivable thing go wrong with it! But its finally, touch wood, nearly ready. And its good! Anyway, thanks for the nice comments, except possibly the James Blunt comparison, but you can't win 'em all! I will make sure he reads this review. Cheers, Rob.

 

On 20th October 2005 at 16:03 Anonymous 30 wrote...

No problems Rob it was genuinely my pleasure. I did say the pace was like that of James Blunt not that he sounds like him.

 

On 20th October 2005 at 16:26 Anonymous 2538 wrote...

Yes, fair enough you did, I guess that's better! I read it in a hurry, although was it mentioned a little later as well?

Probably not actually... I may be going mad...

Anyway, far be it for me to complain about someone else's four and a half star review! I'm going to shut up now before you mark it down on the gounds of Ric "having irritating friends"!!

 
 
 

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