Title - 'Stockton Rhythm'
Artist - James Blonde
It has been almost a decade since the last James Blonde album, International Orange was released!
Fans of The Producers, Hawks, The Sinceros and in a more modern reference, Ed James and the Tearaways are going to connect hard with James Blonde, of that have no doubt.
Indeed, you will, also, find echoes of later-era Spongetones, The Flashtones and “Set To Pop” era Bill Lloyd too.
It’s riffy, hook-laden, hard driving rhythmic bar pop that would easy to dismiss such present day channeling if the songs were not so well crafted and refined through the fires of passion and unpretentiousness.
And so, for all intents and purposes, here on their follow-up album Stockton Rhythm, is the sound of the post new wave of the early 80’s updated for 2010 - so good, so catchy, an easy pleasure with not a duff, weak track.
1. 'Abbey's Gone' (4:05)
2. 'On The Streets' (3:49)
3. 'El Dorado' (5:03)
4. 'Stain' (4:55)
5. 'Live It Up' (3:12)
6. 'New Wave' (2:35)
7. 'Peace' (3:28)
8. 'Baby Doesn't Think It's Wrong' (3:02)
9. 'Out Of My Mind' (2:56)
10. 'Stop Wasting Time' (3:11)
11. 'Water From My Eyes' (5:04)
12. 'All Night Long' (Bonus Track)
Having admired the front cover art more than once (not to mention the back artwork also), first we get their Gin Blossoms / Romantics sound on 'Abbey's Gone,' the brilliant AOR vibrancy of both 'On The Streets' and 'El Dorado,' and then the '80s pop slide of 'Stain.'
The energetic 'Live It Up' is a delightful nod to The Knack, and that's backed by both guitar-led pieces 'New Wave' and 'Peace.' Adding a wee bit of late '60s / early '70s vibe to 'Baby Doesn't Think It's Wrong' is anything but a mistake, and quickly turns it into my own personal favorite on the album.
The pace doesn't relent on 'Out Of My Mind,' but slightly pillows the brakes for 'Stop Wasting Time.' Then, as the album comes to a close, we get the one and only ballad, a delicate piano musing entitled 'Water From My Eyes,' before it finally rounds out with the bonus track 'All Night Long' (and no, it's not the Lionel Ritchie song!).
Amazon CD Purchase Link