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Little Finger: Big Finish

Big Finish has been a curious listen for me, sometimes blowing so hot that everything within its sights is left asunder, while on other occasions I listen to the same tracks and have to shake the snow off my boots, so cold has it left me. And even now, a few weeks down the line with this album, I’m listening to it as I type and am left wondering which way the flip will flop this time.

To give a little context, David Brooks is the man behind this ‘band’, an idea born out of the frustration known as lockdown coming to fruition as he invited the likes of Angela Brooks, Ashley Slater, TJ Davis and Joell Fender to embellish what is an otherwise one man endeavour. Brooks is one of those ‘you may not know his name, but you’ll know his music’ characters, time spent alongside Smokey Robinson, Samuel L. Jackson (yes, you read that right), The Sway Allstars Orchestra and latterly as keyboard man for Gary Numan impressive indeed for a chap who can also count time as a DJ and with both Cutting Crew and (ahem) D:Ream as part of an incredible back story. Now, that’s a mixed bag of a career and in itself that maybe explains Big Finish and, for me, its interesting ‘issues’. Now I put ‘issues’ in quotes because I actually think those problems are more mine than they are this album’s, because I wouldn’t normally settle down to listen to sharp, well observed pop music very often, and that’s exactly what this is. Just take in the heartfelt “I Feel Like I Want To Die” - which actually reminds of This Oceanic Feeling in places - to understand the pointed, electronic beats that play off a soaring vocal melody and intricate keyboard motifs. Then soak up “Fly” to feel those same sentiments in a much more melancholy situation as a Beatles like piano rhythm sets the scene for another vocal that digs deep into the soul. Add in the impressive “Beautiful Day” or the bounce of “Somethings Gone Wrong”, which shows a much more energetic bent and even I’m asking, what’s the problem then? This is great!

Well, for me, it’s when this album puts its foot down that I kind of begin to flail about for somewhere to hang on to, “Give Me Something” possessing an all too self conscious modernism in its core that I just can’t connect with, while “My Life” can’t help but ask for directions to the UK charts in the 90s, from whence it apparently came.

When Big Finish is good, it really is quite an experience of soul bearing, heart tugging intensity. However, once more vibrancy is sought out, the results inexplicably slide into something a whole lot more throwaway and maybe even boy-band like, leaving me with two thirds of an excellent album and one third I’d happily never hear ever again.

Track Listing
1. Fly
2. Something’s Gone Wrong
3. Beautiful Day
4. Get A Life
5. I Feel Like I Want To Die
6. My Friends
7. Sleeping With The Lights On
8. There’s No Such Thing As Love
9. Wasted
10. My Life
11. Give Me Something
12. Sleeping With The Lights On (Acoustic)

Added: August 21st 2021
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Little Fingers online
Hits: 606
Language: english

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