There’s going to be a lot of people who like this — people with a fondness for acoustic guitar and singer-songwriters doing it well. There’s nothing laboured about Sarstedt’s music, no shoe-horning words to the tune or trying too hard. It may not be breaking any new ground and despite skirting around topics one might expect from someone who was big decades ago it never seems clichéd.
Back Again is about the tired rock ‘n’ roller — “Don’t get up ‘til the evening / the sun hurts my eyes” — but turns into a political song, both Sarstedt and the people having been on a long road for too long. Even I Just Want To Rock And Roll (“I love the music, I like the life. I just want to rock n roll”) is no cliché.
Clive Sarstedt achieved success in 1976 when he reached number three in the UK with My Resistance is Low using his middle name, Robin. That’s about it as far as the UK charts go, but he had hits in Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg.
We’re guessing it’s just Sarstedt on this CD, just his voice and acoustic and electric guitar. There’s some lovely guitar playing, too; smooth and vaguely bluesy riffs on the electric guitar and some nice picking on the acoustic guitar.
He opens with a selection of his own songs, all of which are strong compositions, before some covers, including Beirut by brother Peter and Nobel Laureate Bob’s Thunder On The Mountain.
Try the opener, Love Can Hurt. This is out next month so we might plug it again. He’s not on tour but you can catch him at Tito’s on the Mojacar Playa, Almeria, Spain, where he pulls in packed audiences every Sunday afternoon.
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