The former Ash frontman, Tim Wheeler released his first solo album in November after much anticipation. The album opens with a rather beautiful instrumental piece of music in the shape of “Snow In Nara”. Each guitar chord is as aurally striking as the last.
“End Of An Era” is a love song that fails to evoke the feelings that Tim Wheeler is trying to convey. That is at least until around the three minute mark when the song has an unexpected burst of energy. Probably too little too late though.
“Hospital” has a certain Elliott Smith vibe with moments in the song mirroring Elliott’s hopeless melancholy style.
“Vigil” is a song which sounds like it was written with radio play in the forefront of his mind as it has everything you would expect from a single. Sing-a-longability? Check. Big build up to chorus? Check.
Quiet middle? Check. Big finish? Check. The backing vocals midway through the song sound staggeringly like Sigur Ros.
Another brilliant instrumental piece on this album is “Vapour”. It is refreshing to hear Tim record something that is completely different to his days in Ash. There is a Deluxe Edition of the album also available which features an extra eight tracks. Some of which ironically are better than some that made it onto the original album. Tracks like “Ariadna” and “One Last Song” are good examples of this and deserved a spot on the album. Also on the Deluxe Edition are two of Ash’s most famous songs covered by Tim on the piano. The two songs are “Shining Light” and “Sometimes”. “Sometimes (Piano Version)” is one of the best songs on the entire album. It is a track about having everything at one point but now it’s over. A poignant way to finish the album in the wake of the success and the ultimate demise of Ash.
If you are planning on buying this album then it really would be worth your while getting the Deluxe Edition as it definitely elevates the album higher than the standard edition achieved.
Standout Tracks: Snow In Nara, Hospital & Sometimes (Piano Version)