Fireworks

Tonight - 'Drummer Man' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/02/0b/10/971_TonightDrummerMan_1297195320.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     February 08, 2011    
 
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A fantastic collection that will enrich the collection of anyone who enjoys catchy melodic, yet attitude packed music.

Credited as being the first band who coined the phrase "Power Pop", Southend band Tonight are the classic tale of a talented band that got caught up in record label politics, their star burned very brightly, but very briefly. Forming in mid 1977 it is almost inevitable that the Tonight sound is infused with the energy and swagger of punk, however it is amazing just how sixties influenced the twelve tracks that were intended to make up the band's debut album are. Imagine if Paul McCartney and John Lennon had formed a band in the late seventies and you won't be far off the sound presented here. Now I'm not suggesting that they should have been up there with The Beatles, however the vocal line and harmonies of the live rendition of 'Spilling My Drink', have Beatles sensibilities stamped all over them and even the bouncy guitar sound during the solo, screams Fab Four. The other thing that sets Tonight apart from the barrowload of punk wannabies from the time, is the standard of musicianship and the killer vocals which are integral to all the songs on this disc.

I would never pretend to be a big fan of punk, although I can appreciate the large part it played in music history, but that doesn't stop me from being completely sold on wonderfully melodic anthems like 'Spotlight Lookalike' or 'Stroll On By'. The reason for that is that this is New Wave Power Pop with Punk attack, but not the bullshit of "I don't care if I can play my instrument". The best comparison that I could make to these songs is The Hives and I would guess that somewhere along the line these demos slipped into the hive at some point, as not only are the song structures remarkably similar, but the attitude that runs through them is exactly the same.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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The album opens with the cocky strut and sharp rhythm of Tonight's 1978 hit single 'Drummer Man', which hit No. 14 that year. The guitars sing with a sting and frontman Chris Turner fires out the words with his harsh, yet warm tones that shine across this twelve song collection. It would be as easy to imagine him spitting out the songs of Peter & The Test Tube Babies, as it would be to hear him fronting the altogether more musical hits from a band like Creedence Clearwater Revival. I can't stress enough that this is NOT a punk album in any shape or form, but it does have the essence of what made that genre so vital for such a short space of time. The blend of the late seventies anger with the sixties penchant for harmonies and melody is even today a huge breath of fresh air, making this album one of the best "nostalgia" releases I've heard all year. Add to that great sleeve notes from the band's bassist Russ Strothard and vintage pictures and newspaper clippings, and you have a fantastic collection that will enrich the collection of anyone who enjoys catchy melodic, yet attitude packed music.

Steven Reid

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  • SeaDog57 : just an observation. I just got Issue 89 at the Bookstore and when i looked at the spine of the magazine it says "Fireworks Issue 85 Winter Jan - Mar 2019" Was this a misprint? The rest of the Magazine is Issue 89. Was just wondering did anyone else notice this?
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  • Berny : @zom414: Fireworks Magazine #89 will be available at selected UK based newsagents on December 16th. The digital version can already be purchased in our Download Store.
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