Evocative album’s a shore thing

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THE WORLD may have gone to the Oscars this week, but Derbyshire’s Glenn Birks is letting the sounds of the silver screen wash over his music.

Even the promo picture to accompany his Stories In The Sea Mist CD feels like a cinema-release billboard.

And the evocative songs he’s created feel like the soundtrack to a film that was never made.

Opening track Purple Weeds of Castleton Grove has a jazzy funked up sound with cool keys floating on top.

It’s the signature theme to a detective flick, shot through with noir but directed by Michael Mann.

Two whole minutes pass before the vocals kick in, and when they do, they’re almost spoken - the words of a narrator with a story to tell.

Then Glenn unleashes a killer guitar solo and a check of the credits shows he’s not only written the whole album, but also played all bass, guitar and keyboards, as well as providing the vocals.

Last Season’s Elderflowers rings out with summery guitar strings and a vocal swimming deep within the mix, not just paddling over the surface.

Do You Have A Sister? meanwhile has a sexier dance feel with more killer keyboard work.

It sounds like The Stranglers’ Dave Greenfield guesting on a pumped George Michael track.

Throughout the whole album there are subtle shifts in mood and complex interweaving of instrumentation and parts.

Glenn explained the album came out of his urge to write and produce a full album of all original songs.

“I was on the second of three sound engineering courses and was excited about trying out all the stuff I was learning. I have always been heavily influenced by Eighties music, ABC, Kajagoogoo, Frankie goes to Hollywood, and had always liked the production of Trevor Horn.

“ I had previously worked on soundtracks and wanted to do something different. I had never had myself down as a great songwriter, but 2011 had a lot of emotional stuff going on in my life, which I poured into the album.

“The songs on here are the most emotional stuff I have ever written.

“The album does seem to go with a nautical feel, but there is a few curve balls in there. It’s a very special album to me, in the sense that no matter what I write about in the future, it will never eclipse this. “