Earlier this week, Ginger fans received the best Christmas gift a Ginger fan could receive: a new Ginger album. Albion, formerly know as Practical Musician, was released in the form of a download on Monday night through PledgeMusic (the physical release will be shipped to pledgers in 2014, and will be followed by a 10 track commercial release later in the year). This is Ginger's third project with PledgeMusic, and features his road-worn tour band along with Bryan Scary on keyboards.
Albion brings together a lot of the musical extremities Ginger has been regularly (seriously regularly) dishing out over the past few years, with über catchy pop choruses à la Hey! Hello!, the devastating riffs and complex time changes we heard in the Mutation project, and the lyrical sophistication of 555%. If it was a tiny bit less weird it would probably be a decent starting point for the uninitiated.
As a huge fan of Ginger's songs, while I'm still getting to grips with this behemoth of a record there's very little to dislike. I've always loved the contrast in his music, with riffs 80s Metallica would have killed for sitting unabashedly alongside beautiful pop melodies. Cambria is my favourite example of musical contrast on this record. I never fail to get chills when Victoria Liedtke's angelic voice kicks in (this while the listener is still reeling from the screamy verse and choral hookfest that comes beforehand).
Initial reaction might suggest that this is a challenging record for many (even Ginger) but I imagine I'm in the majority in my opinion that this is a brilliant set of tunes, and I know it will be on heavy rotation in 2014.
Have a happy new year Thingees.
Pledge for Albion!