Alternative music reviews

October 2, 2008

Message from A Mockingbird by Only Makebelieve

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Message from A Mockingbird by Only MakebelieveAlthough I gathered that Only Makebelieve take a lot of influence from the 60’s, it was the 1980’s that first came to mind as I listened to the start of this album. I wasn’t particulary keen on the 80s when I lived through them and anything that sounds like Tears For Fears will annoy me – so can I volunteer to drive a stake through the heart of Letters For The Dead and Rayna’s Smile and make sure they never rise again.

But then on the third track Spending My Life someone has turned the ‘Overblown’ dial down from 11 to about 8. There’s a sense of fresh air about the arrangements and there are some very 60’s influenced backing harmonies that make the song work despite some hackneyed basslines.

Spending My Life by Only Makebelieve

Spending My Life by Only Makebelieve (clip)

Although the 60’s element is only occasionally discernable, it is that which for me adds the little sprinkle of magic to this album. The rest of the time, the music is well constructed, well played, but suffering from too much density of sound (layered synths/treated guitars etc) – just like 80s keyboard bands. Obviously it is not quite to my taste, but I have to admit that I have enjoyed it a lot when Motorway driving. The sound isn’t overpowering when it has to fight against an engine and there are enough moments of melodic sparkle to make a journey better.

Backstab by Only Makebelieve

Backstab Only Makebelieve (clip)

Only Makebelieve