As the heat wave continues in London, so do the series of hot shows. Starsailor last night unveiled their new album, Silence Is Easy in a live environment to an audience of fan club members, radio winners and journalist punks like me. Although the temperature was almost unbearable, the boys from Chorley played a blinding set winning over even the harshest critics.
As the band took the stage, I noticed that they numbered five instead of their usual four. Not only that, but I swore they had Mark Collins from The Charlatans on guitar. As I ruminated on this, the band kicked into their new albumís opener, the stompy ìMusic Was Saved,î a bouncy happy tune if ever there was one. Next up was last album crooner ìAlcoholic,î after which frontman James Walsh, looking a bit more fit than last time I had seen him, announced their guest on guitar. Result! Good to know Iím not totally losing my marbles. Yet. Collins guitar bits fleshed out the bandís sound immensely, adding depth where before it lacked. The rest of the set consisted of part old material (ìPoor Misguided Soul,î ìLullaby,î ìTie Up My Handsî) but mostly tracks from their sophomore release, out September 23. The depressingly-lyriced but beautifully arranged ìFidelity,î ìSome Of Us,î ìTelling Them,î ìBorn Again,î and the funky, ë70s soul flavored ìFour To The Floorî were all worked through on the evening, many of the packed house hearing the songs for the first time. The Phil Spector-produced title track went off like fireworks and the encore closing epic ìGood Soulsî was exceptionally stellar with the added six-string work of Mr. Collins. Silence Is Easy is a much stronger and fuller sounding album than its predecessor and on this hot London summer night, they provided their best live show that I had witnessed in four tries. Nice work, kids.