# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Lightning Seeds - See You in the Stars

  by Fiona Hutchings

published: 26 / 11 / 2022

Lightning Seeds - See You in the Stars
Label: BMG
Format: CD


Evocative and emotionally powerful first album in eighteen years from the Lightning Seeds, which proves worth the long wait

After treating us to five albums in the 1990s, the last being the criminally underappreciated (in some quarters) ‘Tilt’ in 1999, the new millennium has been sadly Lightning Seeds light. Until now, there was ‘Four Winds’ in 2009 which followed Ian Broudie’s solo album 2004 ‘Tales Told’ with the EP ‘Smoke Rings’ the following year. Maybe my mother is right and patience is a virtue after all because ‘See You In The Stars’ was worth the wait. There is something almost perversely joyful about the upbeat, beautiful opening track ‘Losing You’ and the happy heartbreak swings straight into the third single 'Emily Smiles’. The latter has the sort of low key video featuring a choir of commuters that I have spent far too many trips on public transport constructing in my head. It’s a great example of the fact that not everything needs bells and just a guard’s whistle can be enough. It was also cowritten with The Specials’ heavyweight Terry Hall, a relationship that stretches back to the early 1990s and the single ’Lucky You’ among others. 'Great To Be Alive’ was co-written with The Coral’s James Skelly, and hits harder on a personal level than I could have ever anticipated. Regular readers know I don’t take being alive for granted because my near misses have been pretty near. Painting pictures with words is something Mr Brodie excels at. When I play it for the first time it is like a very lovely, gentle slap to the face. Just like that I know which song I’ll be singing to myself over and over when I spend the fifth anniversary of the last brain surgery in hospital being scanned to see if more death bubbles have formed in said brain. Yes, the song makes me cry but in the sort of way that immediately makes me feel better about something I am dreading. It is good to be alive, even when life is difficult it’s still life and having one is a privilege. The single ‘Sunshine’ is suitably sunny and ‘Fit For Purpose’ is gently defiant. Despite each track on this album featuring his signature jangly guitars and almost angelic backing vocals ,they all manage to feel like they have their own personality. This is classic Lightning Seeds, a coherent, hopeful but shot through with a little anxiety sounding album. Some tracks are more bittersweet and others, such as ‘Live To Love You’ are unabashedly upbeat. ‘Permanent Danger’ (another idea I identify a bit too much with) manages to sound a bit rougher, it’s got jagged edges but somehow doesn’t sound like proceedings have taken a jarring turn. I am still humming ‘Walk Another Mile’ because the call and response and multitracking is the sort of thing that ear worms are made of. ‘See You In The Stars’ ends the album on a gently devastating note. Brodie had lost a friend and saw the track as a way of saying “I hope I see you later”. Buy it, play it a few times, it rewards repeated listens as the depth of the songs reveal themselves. This is an album that feels almost too short, ten tracks clocking in at just over half an hour. No song breaches 3 minutes 35 seconds and yet I don’t feel hard done by or starved after waiting so long. Sometimes you can make your point perfectly without labouring the point. Leave the crowd wanting more is the phrase.

Track Listing:-
1 Losing You
2 Emily Smiles
3 Green Eyes
4 Great To Be Alive
5 Sunshine
6 Fit For Purpose
7 Live To Love You
8 Permanent Danger
9 Walk Another Mile
10 See You In The Stars

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