Ever wonder what the guy from Mahogany Rush went on to do after appearing on ‘Axe Attack’? Nothing to do with this review but I was just wondering. Anyways, So, the guy from the Connections has gone and gotten himself a solo deal and hooked up with some of the finest record labels anywhere not just the good old US of A and he’s put out a long player entitled ‘Extra Credit’ with Kris Rodgers lending a hand.
So what’s he gonna do outside his day job seeing as he’s the guitarist, voice and songwriter in The Connections. Well, that’s open to debate but unless he’s got a hidden penchant for writing disco tunes or jazz prog its gonna be just a variation on those power popping hooks and rockin’ and rollin’ tunes were used to and once the needle drops (or the laser kicks in) you get to hear just what a talent this guy is. Not content with the gift of penning hook after hook or catchy melody after awesome harmony he manages pretty much everything on this apart from getting in fellow Rum Bar recording artist Kris Rodgers to layer in some piano and keys as well as pipe up with some vocal on a couple of tracks.
So let’s get into this bad boy. ‘Broken Clocks’ is an uptempo rocka and has some lush BV’s and that ragged rock n roll guitar riff that almost clean but just a little rough as it reels you in and before you know it your foot is tapping and nobody gives a shit that the solo is straight out of the Chuck Berry school of guitar licks 101 man this already makes me feel good and the first track hasn’t even finished yet.
Get a load of that barroom rock n roll on ‘No One Else Tried It’ its unoriginal for sure but man these cats just nail it from the twelve-bar to the ivory-tinkling to the bridge and gang vocals to the battle between the guitar and that keyboard on the solo its just timeless.
If the melodies and classy arrangments aren’t enough Brad has only gone and penned a track with Kurt Baker. Obviously ‘Wake Up Baby’ is brilliant power pop how could it not be? I could go through each song heaping on the same superlatives but you should know the drill by now and the songs are so well crafted from the rapid riff of ‘From The Start’ to the new wave Attractions-esque of ‘Broken Record’ this record reminds me of The Speedways and their brilliant melodies well this could easily be a long lost overseas relative easily. I also have to remind myself here that this record is almost truly a solo record as Brad plays everything bar the keys and organ as he leaves the tin the capable hands of Kris Rodgers. Talent like this is a rare beauty, oh and he produced it too with Kris (makes you sick doesn’t it?)
To be fair it makes perfect sense and a nice tip of the hat to include ‘Bye Bye Johnny’ seeing as it clearly inspired the guitar solos throughout this record and I tell myself if you have to borrow something why not borrow from the best so hats off all round and cheers for the tunes Chuck and Brad for this excellent feel-good record I have in my hands now where are my shades?
Europeans buy it from Beluga Records Here
America, Rum Bar await your orders Here
Author: Dom Daley