Having a more flirtatious attitude towards UK rockers Space and their releases over the years rather than giving a purposeful focus to each endeavour, certainly since the excellent Tin Planet gripped attention, there is now the suspicion we may have been missing out. That suggestion comes through new single Strange World, the first song we have taken a proper look at since the band returned to life in 2011. It is a tantalising weave of styles and flavours casting a creative seduction that is as dark as it is nostalgic as it is irresistible.
Formed in 1993, Space released a trio of albums in the generally acclaimed shapes of Spiders, Tin Planet, and Suburban Rock ‘n’ Roll, as well as the unreleased Love You More than Football which was recorded four years before the 2004 unveiling of the latter of that trio. These, with a host of singles, marked the band’s twelve year presence before the band split in 2005. The funeral of former drummer Andy Parle in 2009 brought the remaining original members of Space back together, the breaking of the ice between them that planted the seeds for a return of the band which officially came about two years later. Enlisting bassist/double bassist Phil Hartley, keyboardist Ryan Clarke, and drummer Allan Jones to the line-up of vocalist guitarist Tommy Scott, keyboardist Franny Griffiths, and guitarist Jamie Murphy, Space made their live return with a reunion gig at the O2 Academy Liverpool in December 2011. Despite the subsequent departure of Murphy, the band created and released the well-received album Attack of the Mutant 50ft Kebab in 2014. Now down to a quartet with Clarke leaving last year, Space gives a flavoursome teaser to an impending new album slated for early next year with Strange World, a song ready to treat ears and imagination.
That it does instantly as provocative percussion leads just as endearing harmonies and tempting guitar to ears. Immediately there is a sixties air to the song aligned to a mariachi/dark rock ‘n roll climate, like the Walker Brothers slipping into Tarantino country. The distinctive voice of Scott is soon walking through the evocative scenery, his tones having lost none of their prowess and expression over time and comfortably courting the brewing orchestral embrace and elegance of guitar and bass strings matched by the keys as brass bring their own the sultry flames.
Noir lit but as intense as a desert sun, Strange World is an absorbing adventure as intimate as it is cinematically suggestive and seriously compelling. The same applies, if a slightly lesser extent, to the accompanying alternative version of Female of The Species which first ignited ears back in 1996 as a single and part of Spiders. Also taken back to the dramatic era of sixties rock/pop, with an appropriate rawness towing along a sci-fi revelry of that time, the song is the return of an old friend with a nostalgic make-over that is quite easy to get lusty over.
For us Strange World is a treat which is also a kick up the backside to any assumptions that a band that has been around a fair old time and returned after significant time away will have also left their glory days behind them. Band Of Holy Joy recently showed the error in that thinking with their recent new album and now Space with their single, and we anticipate on the excellence of Strange World will be again with their forthcoming next album, are doing the same.
Strange World is released via Mulu Records on October 19th.
Forthcoming dates for the Strange World tour:
Wed 21 /October SWINDON VIC
Thu 22 /October ST ALBANS THE HORN
Fri 23 /October SOUTHEND CHINNERYS
Sat 24 /October NORTHAMPTON PICTUREDROME
Sat 31 /October RUNCORN BRINDLEY
Fri 6 /November MINEHEAD SHIIINE
Sat 7 /November CLEETHORPES BEACHCOMBER
Sun 8 /November DONCASTER DIAMOND
Thu 12 /November LEEDS LIBRARY
Fri 13 /November CUMBRIA MONROE BAR
Sat 14 /November STOCKTON GEORGIAN
Fri 20 /November WIGAN OLD COURTS
Sat 21 /November CREWE THE BOX
Sun 22 /November MANCHESTER FAC 251
Tue 24 /November SWANSEA SIN CITY
Wed 25 /November CARDIFF THE GLOBE
Thu 26 /November READING BOWERY
Fri 27 /November BRISTOL FLEECE
Sat 28 /November COVENTRY KASBAH
Mon 30 /November SUNDERLAND THE POINT
Tue 1 /December EDINBURGH ELECTRIC CIRCUS
Wed 2 /December ABERDEEN TUNNELS
Thu 3 /December GLASGOW CLASSIC GRAND
Fri 4 /December LIVERPOOL EPSTEIN
Sat 5 /December LONDON BRIXTON JAMM
Thu 10 /December TUNBRIDGE WELLS FORUM
Fri 11 /December WOLVERHAMPTON SLADE ROOMS
Sat 12 /December LINCOLN PLATFORM
Fri 18 /December GLOUCESTER GUILDHALL
Sat 19 /December NORWICH UEA
Pete RingMaster 19/10/2015
Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright
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