Monday, 9 February 2009

Conner Reeves - Welcome To The Future

Three strong hitters from the song writing arsenal of Conner Reeves, a nod to the romantic misgivings within a relationships well as the horrendous state of the world that we all live in. “Oughtabealaw” is not a cover of the old Ronnie Laws song, but a new gem that rates as one of Connor's best efforts. His silky vocals meander soulfully between Eric Tagg, and Babyface and even Stevie Wonder in between. His skills as a songwriter are second to none, and he can equally please any listener, sometimes all at the same time which is some considerable feat. This song is my favourite of the three on offer; “Something Beautiful” more at home within a 70s Muscle Shoals setting perhaps, the down-south bluesyness only equalled of late by the superb Marti Pellow on his essential “Moonlight Over Memphis” CD from last year.
The “Welcome To The Future” song is a lyrical tour-de-force. Definitely not a throwaway pop song, nor is it a track to have on in the background. The song is not only intelligent but it tells a strong narrative that is not exactly defeatist but is a slap in the face to us all. The brave new world of yesteryear is really as dark as he says it is – in fact, a lot more and then some but there we go. Is this the future we wanted? No, and in saying “Welcome To The Future” the bitter irony in the title is well spent. As a holistic set, though, Conner reminds us that not everything is bad. Conner is a man of thought and deed, no more no less. This EP is a small scout into the consciousness of someone who will never forget Steven Lawrence or the society that allows that to happen with sad impunity. If ever there was a message in the music as espoused by Gamble & Haff, Mr. Reeves has it and is more than happy to use his gifts as a channel. Well worth a purchase on CD or downloaded from iTunes.

Barry Towler

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