But if ever there was a band that deserved even more attention than it’s already getting, then it’s the Medway four-piece.
LOUD HORIZON has been championing the cause from way before the release of the band’s first album, and indeed wrote about them in ARTROCKER MAGAZINE some two and a half years ago! Since then (though not necessarily as a direct result of!) their stock and standing has steadily risen, with their two albums and other EP releases garnering ‘five star’ ratings from the afore-mentioned music bible, as well as broadsheet newspaper mentions and plentiful airplay on national radio.
Each release showcases the increasing maturity of song-writing (though I have to say it was of a pretty high standard from the off) and this new EP, featuring five previously unreleased recordings certainly highlights that fact.
I say there are five new recordings … though not exactly five new songs – the track ‘Three Ships,’ appears on the band’s last album, ‘At The End Of A River, The Sea …’ However it has been completely re-worked ( and slightly re-titled) for the this EP. This version ‘Three Ships (disappear here)’ has a more ‘confident’ ring about it; a sturdier feel. It’s more Seventies sounding guitar and stomp than the more acoustic and harmonica based original.It’s also about a minute and a half shorter. Better though!
‘Learning How To Be Idle,’ is dominated early on by piano and Oliver Burgess’s vocals, but then in comes the gentle twang of what sounds like a pedal-steel guitar, giving the track a bit of a bluesy, country feel … but not too much! There then follows an acoustic / solo version by Oliver of last year’s vinyl-only single, ‘Katherine’s Sleeping,’ and a similarly styled demo recorded (at the famous Sun Studios no less) by guitarist Robbie of ‘Orchard Song.’ Maybe because I’m biased, I still enjoy both although I have to say Oliver’s vocals are the better suited to this type of delivery.
‘(Just Like) A Sunny Day In June‘ is the type of song that made me think way back that THEATRE ROYAL are going to attract a LOT of positive attention
This is the first release from the band on their own Medlar Records label and is being made available on a very strictly Limited Edition, hand numbered CD format as well as the usual download. Both can be ordered through the THEATRE ROYAL Bandcamp page.