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Howe, Brian - 2003 Touch

Brian Howe - vocals
Terry Thomas - guitars, keyboards
Mick Jones - guitar
Douglas Berlent - piano
Chris Hunt - guitar
Felix Krish - bass, drums, keyboards
Seth Glassman - bass

A comeback of sorts, for the ex Ted Nugent and Bad Company front man Brian Howe. The Englishman, who has had an interesting and chequered life, now resides in Fort Myers Florida, soaking up the rays and the hurricanes instead of the constant rain back in his homeland. Fans of Brian Howe will know that this 2003 album 'Touch' is in fact a re-release of his 1997 indie album 'Tangled In Blue'. Back then, it didn't do that well (according to Brian's website), and it appears he is now set to release new material with the German based label into the future, preceded by this effort which takes on the appearance of an entree. Best remembered for a string of Bad Company hits from their platinum selling album 'Holy Water' including 'If You Needed Somebody', Howe's delivery is not so much a mirror-image of that era, but branches out to a mature classic rock sound, best compared with the likes of fellow Englishmen John Waite, Paul Brady and Robert Hart. Occasionally he might gravitate down into Foreigner territory, notwithstanding the fact that Mick Jones is on the cast list. In reality that's to be be expected given the material and influences, but that is thankfully a case of less not more.

The Songs
The closest comparison for this 'Touch' album is probably Jack Russell's solo album from last year. Pleasant jangly melodic rock: great vocals, warm arrangements and just the right amount of spice in the mix courtesy of the ex Charlie duo of Terry Thomas and Felix Krish. Beautiful and subtle moments like the title track 'Touch', 'I Will Find A Way' and 'Tangled In Blue' are offset by the mild aggression of 'Where'd She Come From' and 'Just Because'. A couple of interesting moments: 'I Remember' is a strange choice for an opening track, an OK track but not exactly a scene-setter. At the other end of the album is a previously unreleased tune called 'How It Could Have Been', an excellent mid-paced rocker with a nice acoustic & electric guitar combination, somewhere between Nelson and Wilson Philips (the latter without the three-part harmonies of course).

In Summary
A surprisingly good album, and one that melodic rockers with a few spare bucks/euros on their hands might consider adding to their monthly buy-up of CD's from your favourite local CD Retailer. If we can track Brian down on his travels (he's currently on tour at the time of writing), then we might be able to get a word or two in for GLORY DAZE. Love to talk with him about his beloved Portsmouth, now in the UK premier league, among other things!!


Track Listing:
01 I Remember
02 Where'd She Come From
03 Touch
04 Tangled In Blue
05 Just Because
06 Here They Come Again
07 All I Want Is You
08 How Does It Feel
09 I Will Find A Way
10 Don't Ask Me Why
11 How It Could Have Been

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