The Review Zone – Backroom Stereo : If You’re Gonna Fall in Love @BackroomStereo

backroom-stereo-if-youre-gonna-fall-in-loveBACKROOM STEREO : If You’re Gonna Fall in Love (https://backroomstereo.bandcamp.com)

Backroom Stereo is actually one man, Mark Tiddy, who evidently began the project back in 2013 and has issued singles and EPs prior to this full-length release. The vast majority of music reviewed in NFN is usually Christian in nature – overtly or otherwise – but here we have 11 tracks of indie guitar-driven pop which are, according to Mark’s website, ‘…. about falling in love, heartache and hope’. And ‘It’s a record that reminds me that there is always hope no matter how bad things get and not to settle for second best’. There is an ‘Englishness’ in Mark’s vocal delivery, and he reminds me somewhat of Mark Nevin, leading light of the late eighties band ‘Fairground Attraction’. Sound quality is pretty good whilst varying a bit -– compression is most obviously wacked up for instance on track 1 ‘Nashville’ – but his vocals are clear and musically I found this album quite enjoyable. Lyrically however I found myself feeling quite sorry for Mark. He is evidently ‘… more personally attached’ to this album ‘than any record I’ve ever written’ and ‘… lyrically it’s incredibly honest in places and as an overall record it tells a story’. My impression at the end was of a guy who tends to lust after women from a distance, and if he does successfully enter into a meaningful relationship something goes wrong – let’s hope and pray that Mark finds the lady of his dreams! Best tracks for me are ‘Therapy’, ‘Is she crazy for me?’ and ‘Near misses and lost summer kisses’. The closing track is a ‘bonus’ one, being a duet version repeat of ‘Trainwreck’, but the female vocals sound somewhat strange and indistinct. Difficult to rate, but I’ll settle on 6/10. Dave Deeks

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