Down In It | review
Harem Scarem's "other" mainman Pete Lesperance – guitarist, co-writer and co-producer - has stepped outsidethe Harem name on many occasions, but never for his own benefit.
Finally now, his debut solo album has been created and released – sadly only to a Japanese audience thus far.
Pete's solo style isn't a surprise, nor is the quality of the album. Neither Pete or Harry have ever disappointed, and this is no exception.
As expected, this is a hybrid of the more recent Harem Scarem production style and the modern pop sound of the two Rubber albums, plus the feel of Harry's own solo album.
Mix a little classic modern pop/melodic rock with the fabled nu-breed musical description and add a dozen high class songs and you get an album that is essential for fans of the style and of Harem Scarem in general.
Pete's singing was previewed on each of the two Rubber albums, but he really comes into his own here, his voice perfectly crafted to fit the tone and style of the moody, modern melodic pop/rock on offer. You won't find better examples of perfectly crafted pop as the opening track Scars and the essential title track Down In It.
The album is dominated by Pete's well known guitar sound, and the trademark Harem rhythm section of Barry Donaghy (b/vo) and Creighton Doane (ds/vo), but there are moments where the plot changes. Boy Without A Clue is a heavier, more aggressive rocker, Say You Will is perfect modern pop with a monster BBMak style hook, and Where U Want Me is as close to Harem as you could imagine.
The album closes with the obligatory instrumental, a trademark of Pete's.
The Bottom Line
Without a doubt, this is another classy, flawless addition to the Harem Scarem catalogue and yet another reason why the Lesperance/Hess duo is so highly acclaimed. They can just do no wrong.
The modern pop/rock style of this will dictate that not all Harem fans will enjoy the ride, but if you own and enjoy the Rubber albums, this is every bit as good, if not even better than those. Style aside, the production is perfect and there isn't one filler track amongst the lot.
Songs: 90%, Sound: 95%, Overall: 93%Review by Andrew McNeice
Originally posted at melodicrock.com