The Wedding Present – Valentina

January 01, 1970

(Scopitones)

 

www.scopitones.co.uk

 

A number of
reviewers have been calling the new Wedding Present album a “return to form”
for David Gedge and his Weddoes but come on, anyone who thinks this is as good
as Bizarro or Seamonsters (both classics) needs to have  his/her head examined.  Having said that, Valentina is not a bad record and definitely the best of the three
(including 2005’s Take Fountain and
2008’s El Rey) released since Gedge reformed the Weddoes after pulling the plug
on Cinerama (who I loved, but no one else seemed to). 

 

Gone is longtime
female bassist Terry de Castro (who still supplied backing vocals on two
tracks), replaced by Pepe le Moko; still here are drummer Charles Layton and
guitarist/co-songwriter Graeme Ramsay, although Ramsay has subsequently
departed, with Patrick Alexander taking his place earlier this year. Opener
“You’re Dead” sways and cascades and Gedge delivers lines like “I’m making it
clear I want you out of here” (old Gedge, still a real charmer with the ladies)
while “You Jane” has some of that patented jangle that Gedge made famous (and
probably gave him carpal tunnel in the process) and some dreamy backing
vocals.  The rockin’ “Back a Bit…Stop”
also sounds like prime Weddoes with fizzy light socket guitar and thumpy drums
and “The Girl from the DDR,” while a pretty decent song, shows that the guy is still having relationship problems.

 

As with years
past, his heartbreak is our gain and again, while this isn’t going to make you
toss your copy of George Best, it
shows the guy still has some gas left in his tank and is far from embarrassing
himself.

 

DOWNLOAD: “You’re Dead,” “You Jane” “Back a
Bit…Stop” TIM HINELY

 

 

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