Sunday, February 13, 2011

Phil Selway makes a pretty Sunday record

I always enjoy finding something unexpected. Solo works by ancillary band members in established groups usually yield this feeling. I don't know what I expected from PHIL SELWAY's solo record but I have to say I am pleasantly surprised. Selway is of course the drummer for RADIOHEAD and although it won't lead him to quit his day job, it certainly shows that the band is not just THOM YORKE and a cast of others.

Selway dips his toes into some Radiohead sounds (albeit from earlier catalogue era work) on "Beyond Reason" but mostly he skews toward hushed vocals and acoustic guitars. Drums are almost non-existent on the record and Selway's vocal style is reminiscent of Luke Haynes of THE AUTEURS slightly British lilt. Lisa Germano's backing vocals waft over several tracks notably in the "The Ties That Bind"and her gentle coos on the singe "By Some Miracle". Lyrically Selway tells tales of overcoming life's maladies by connecting with others. This is most evident on the penultimate track "Don't Look Down" and it's uplifting message of facing fears and taking the challenge of life head on.

As I sit here on a Sunday morning I find that this is the type of record that is perfect for beginning your day. Quiet, musically interesting enough to keep your attention and lyrically imaginative. I look forward to this playing as I read the paper and drink a cup of coffee...

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