måndag 28 september 2015

MIKE McGEAR/McGEAR K 56051 (-74) UK

In spite of being part of what today is considered a cult record - "McGough & McGear" (Parlophone PMC/PCS 7047) - and having one UK #1 single and two more top 10 with his band The Scaffold (see earlier post), he's still today most known for being Paul McCartneys younger brother. Though changing his name first to "Mike Blank" and finally Mike McGear, so no one could suspect he was cashing in on his brothers fame, it seems he was no stranger to sibling collaboration or letting Paul helping him out every now and then. And that's very obvious on this his second solo album. Apart from the Bryan Ferry cover "Sea Breezes" McCartney wrote or co-wrote all tracks, produced and contributed guitars, bass and vocals together with the rest of Wings and couple of studio musicians. So in practice it is a Wings album with Mike McGear on lead vocals. The signature sound is almost the same, songwriting not entirely up there with contemporary Wings hits but good enough. A couple of the tracks have ability to stick, like the four rockers cuncluding side one and "Simply Love You" because of the beautiful background vocals. Only problem is under those circumstances you'd expect McCartney on lead vocals and McGrear doesn't match up. The faster tracks works OK, yet on the slower ones like "Sea Breezes" you can hear he's not a great singer - hitting the notes but lacking depth and conviction. Still it's an OK album with some very nice moments and valuable as much by own means as the Wings connection. US first on Warner Bros. (BS 2825). Premiere UK had label as shown here and matt fold/out cover with lyric insert. (BÄ*)

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