13 April 2013

Ginger Wildheart - 555%

I can officially state from the beginning of the blog that I was one of the lucky people who make up the 555%.  Yes, I was one of the people that pledged money to Ginger Wildheart to make this album and am very lucky to have the physical CD version, as well as the downloads which were released over 3 glorious weeks in the spring of 2012 at 5.55pm on a Friday.  As you can guess, this album even though it is very recent is an important release for me.  You see, Ginger's main band - The Wildhearts - has been classed as washed up and past it by the main record companies. Ginger had released his last three main solo albums, plus two Wildheart albums and an ep via Round Records.  So, he had an idea and decided to ask the fans to help finance his new album via Pledge music - a website where bands ask people to fund the making of an album with the promise of exclusive which will not be available to people who buy the normal version of the album.  So up went the pledge campaign......it made the target within 6 hours. 6 hours and many a record director would be without money that went to the artist to make the album. No pressure then.......

What came out as a result of this campaign was that Ginger decided to release more music instead of the original single album he was going to release and this was especially for the people who pledge.  There would be a normal version released later (and there was, with the track list voted for the pledger's as well), but I will review the 30 track, three disc, spectacular! Now I will get something out of the way. With a project this big there is always going to be something’s that do not work for everyone. But a couple of tracks out of 30 that don't rock you boat is a good ratio in anyone's books.

Now you may be asking why I have reviewed the full album and not the 100% best of which you can get the physical copy.  Well, whilst looking into this I have found that you can purchase the whole album from Ginger's Bandcamp page - where you can purchase pretty much all of his solo records as well - for a very reasonable price as well.  Now if I went on about every track I would probably bore you and myself, so I will go on about my favourite 5 tracks (but not in the order of preference):

1 - Time - This was the final track off the first batch of 10.  Like most classic rock fans, Ginger has the knack of making a riff which touches the soul and make you think that flying is possible without the aid of wings.  The opening riff is quite possible one of the best he has written; however as good as that part is the rest of the song feels a little bit disjointed.  Never the less, that riff - honestly I love every second that it is played and it comes on quite a bit.

2 - Lover, It'll All Work Out - With an oriental feel to the riff, this is a song taking about people fighting to keep a relationship alive (if it is romantic or not is a different story).  The sound and harmony on this song are as some as your favourite drink in your favourite setting.  For me, it is like a lovely rum coffee after a nice meal with my lady. I could listen to this all done (and for a few days last May that was the case).

3 - The End - This is the last song from the last 10 tracks that was released.  Aptly titled end track is a classic Ginger mash of styles and riffs that feels like you listening to three songs at the same time - at one point it breaks into a jazz hands style section.  It has a glorious ending which keeps building until it ends very suddenly.

4 - Forget About It - The first song of the first batch of ten.  It was not the first one released - that went to the wonderfully title "You're The One, You're The One, Yeah I Know You're The One, You're The One (Yeah I Know You're The One)".  There was also a video done for this one with clips of shows done in Japan where Ginger has a healthy following.  This is one of Ginger's more classic numbers more in line with his Wildhearts days and just as enjoyable.  Pop-punk whilst a wistful heart and a classic sense of timing.

5 - Taste Aversion - When I played this song to Mr Chaney who also does the blogs on here, he had tears in his eyes and said two sentences - "Is this the same man who wrote TV Tan?" and "I need to have this music in my life." - which are very high praise indeed. This is a song which would have Frank Zappa checking his records to see if any of his songs have been stolen. It has everything I personally look for in a song, it has style which is classic and timeless.  This was named the song of the year for ATTIWLTMOWOS.  It is that damn good.

So, it will not be a surprise what the mark is for this album... If you get the 100% version (which is still fantastic) or the download of the full version from the Bandcamp page - the one thing you can be guaranteed to find a load of song with passion, grace, balls and above all - just a classic sense of rhythm.  There is not even a question that I would not support any other one of Ginger's campaigns.

10 out of ten - This is proof that there is a God

Now you cannot buy the 555% CD version as that was for pledger’s only, but there is a best of the project 100% from here

However you can purchase the MP3 version of the 555% here

You can also listen to the 100% version on Spotify here

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