The Lemon Twigs – Songs for the General Public
The Lemon Twigs’ latest album is as radio friendly as its title suggests – or it would have been back in the day. The two brothers, Brian and Michael D’Addario, look exactly how the record sounds, straight from the 70s with obvious influences from Bowie. Instead of hiding their theatrical upbringing, they incorporate it into their work, forcing listeners to see with their ears. Sadly, this is not a sequel to their last offering, a concept album about a chimp finding its way to space. Instead, each track stands alone.
Opener Hell on Wheels forces Michael to take the wheel first, with a choral ensemble of voices that sounds like something Meat Loaf would be proud of. The lyrics aren’t the deepest, but then again, not many catchy songs are. Overall, it’s a great opening that introduces the audience to The Lemon Twigs in a Where’s Wally fashion, though the question posed is: where are the influences?
The pace slows slightly for Live in Favour of Tomorrow, but it is still an epic rock ballad. The production values are highest at the lead into the chorus, where the layers are peeled back to reveal raw vocals and drumbeats. Pianos develop into No One Holds You (Closer Than the One You Haven’t Met). It’s clear from the title what type of song this will be. Somebody Loving You shows the versatility of their voices, showcasing a totally different style and pitch to what has come before, a more glam-rock feel.
This is again opposed in Moon, which is Elton John-esque (if that is a word, which it should be!). It is then immediately clear why The One was chosen as lead single. It is something you would hear on the radio today, unlike the other tracks.
The ending of Hog definitely hits harder than the rest, with deep vocals, howling, and heavy guitars, before it reverts back to its original sound. The experimentation is good – it actually stands out for a few moments. Not many of the songs really leave an impression on non-fans, though. There are limited catchy choruses to stick in people’s heads for days, no tapping of feet to simple rhythms, or humming along with repetitive guitar sequences. The record is a simple and effective homage to the past, but, in the present, it may not be recognised. It’s like a tribute album which is stacked full of influences, but leaves people questioning where the originality is.
Photo: Michael Hili
Songs for the General Public is released on 21st August 2020. For further information or to order the album visit The Lemon Twigs’s website here.
Watch the video for The One here: