They say if you remember the sixties, you weren’t really there.
Well now there’s a new band who definitely weren’t there, but have solved that problem by recording a modern album that brings the sixties sound into the 21st century.
A couple of months ago I heard a song on the radio that sounded like a long lost classic. It had shades of Roy Orbison, a Motown beat and a Phil Spector wall-of-sound production.
The tune was “September Song” by The Hosts.
The Hosts comprise of Tom Hogg on vocals, guitarist Jamie Shipley, keys player Jim Fisher, bassist David Glover and drummer Adam Crofts. They hail from Sheffield, a City with a long rock and pop pedigree – from The Human League to Def Leppard, Arctic Monkeys and Richard Hawley – and have now released their debut album, “Softly Softly”.
It is something of a retro-tinged triumph. It turns out that the September Song single was produced by Richard Hawley, and whilst in hindsight, it may appear his old skool fingerprints are all over it, The Hosts may need little encouragement to turn back the clock and hark back to that classic sixties pop sound. Indeed, Tom Hogg speaks of studying interviews with Phil Spector in order to work out how to get his famed wall of sound.
The result is a fine album, which might have been recorded back when Spector was in his pomp. Opener “Would You be Blue” and single “Give Your Love To Her” sum up The Hosts’ sound. Soaring choruses, echo-filled production and hooks-a-plenty.
Album track “The One” is lovely, made only slightly amusing by the fact that you can sing Renee and Renata’s “Save Your Love” along to it. “In Dreams” on the other hand is the best Roy Orbison song the Big O never recorded. Here’s a video of “Give Your Love To Her”: check it out…