Monday, June 1, 2015

Tom Slatter "Fit the Fourth"

Country: UK
Genre(s)Progressive Rock
LabelBad Elephant Music
FormatCD, digital
Release dateJune 1, 2015
1. Some Of The Creatures Have Broken The Locks On The Door To Lab 558 (7:29)
2. The Steam Engine Murders And The Trial Of Seven Bells John (10:22)
3. Men Of The World (7:14)
4. So Far From The Shore (8:57)
5. Seven Bells Redeemed (20:22)
    I. Flight from Black Water
   II. Gods in alleyways
  III. Hope for the Damned
  IV. Murderer
   V. Breath slow
  VI. Clamouring Crowds
 VII. The Papers Say
VIII. Seven Bells John Confesses
   IX. Gods in Alleyways

Tom Slatter - all vocals and instruments except
Jordan Brown - bass on 1 & 4

Fit The Fourth, possibly taking its title from the fourth episode of the first Hitchhiker's Guide radio series, is unsurprisingly Tom's fourth full-length album since his debut in 2009 with Spinning The Compass. It is also the first thing I've heard by this quintessentially English eccentric-in-the-making. Describing his music as "...Nick Cave...writing songs with Genesis after watching too many episodes of Dr Who", the resultant aural stew is a heady affair, with touches of prog, acid rock, folk troubadour, and indie all put through a retro-futuristic turbo-charged blender.
The album opens with the aforementioned tale of creatures escaping from laboratories, infecting the world with their spores. It is followed with a musically grandiose and Gothic-themed tale of the trial of "Seven Bells John", a steampunk character whose story is told through earlier albums, leading up to the denouement on the 20-minute epic that ends this album. Tom's imagination is a rampant beast of a thing that heads off into dark corners only to come back with gory tales of post-apocalyptic dystopia, souls in torment, alien insect creatures and fish-men, and his music is not exactly straightforward, as you might expect.
Read the full review by Roger Trenwith at astoundedbysound.blogspot.com


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