By Orange Fall
Classic 70s/80s Rock sounds different from each side of the guitar. When your foot's on the monitor speaker those ringing power chords, the thrill of that stereo effect double lead solo, the surge of the harmonies and the deep judder of the rhythm section feel like the power to take over the world, if not a small section of the universe. Orange Fall do all this very well. Genuinely great riffs that millions might lock into during the jeans advert are their stock in trade. Inside Out at track 4 is a great example. Chris Evans could use it to play in his forthcoming BBC TV series.
But from the other side, facing the pickups for seven tracks in a row, it's not such a trip anymore. This kind of music used to be awesome and mind changing. Now it's Heritage and all the conjuring tricks have been revealed. There are plenty of fans out there who still wear the black T shirt, but the market is tribute n' legend these days. They're reviving it (Slack Babbath) or reliving it (Saxon). Orange Fall have given themselves the almost impossible task of starting all over again with second verse same as the first. The moves and the patterns are familiar and well documented. But even when they're done this well (and Orange Fall are damn good) they are fighting against entropy, pushing landslides back up a hill. Somewhere in America they could run their own small radio station. In Swansea, you have to wonder.
Orange Fall seem to know all this. They love it though, and they can't help themselves. They try to mix it up by coming in on track one with some mid-Atlantic rapping nonsense. But it's the only bit of the CD that doesn't work. Their hearts belong to Eddie van Halen and that's it. They'll give you a copy of the demo but you have to go to a gig or the Web site to get it.