Categorized | Album Reviews

Ralegh Long – Upwards of Summer

Posted on 29 June 2017 by Joe

On his second album singer-songwriter UK based Ralegh Long has looked to his early inspirations of 80s/90s college indie rock to produce a decidedly more upbeat affair than his debut Hoverance.

Gone are the pastoral folk subtleties of that first album to be replaced by jangly guitars, smart pop hooks and euphoric choruses.

ralegh long

REM, 10,000 Maniacs and the DBs are among the bands listed as key influences but I can also hear Prefab Sprout in places too. In short, this is pop, pure and simple pop.

Take Your Mind Back opens proceedings with crunching guitars and one of the best choruses on the album and on second track Sleeping On My Dreams he’s frontloaded this album well with another chart threatening tune.

It’s not just a 80s/90s retro throwback though, with former Hefner man Jack Hayter on board with his beautiful pedal steel, there’s a modern, country feel throughout.

Jack Hayter does pop well on Sleeping On My Dreams, but its perhaps on the more laid back title track   and Take It where he shines brightest.

This consistent album from Ralegh Long progresses with an REM-like mandolin on Big August and a fuller sounding version of The Combine, from his EP We Are The Fields, is among further highlights.

Second album’s can be tricky for those like Long that have a strong debut under their belt. Most acts tend to play safe and stick to the template. He could have done that and produced another pastoral selection but he’s decided to take a risk, and it has proved one well worth taking.

Being a late 80s/90s college radio pop star suits him. I’d like to hear more of this sound on future albums but judging by his current rate of progression Ralegh Long may have moved on to pastures new by then.

8/10

by Joe Lepper

For more information about Ralegh Long click here.

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