The Rising, a Southampton based 7 piece fronted by the force of nature that is Tommy Overington released the follow up to their much loved 2013 self titled debut on Friday November 9th, and Merc was delighted to be sent an advanced copy.
“Are You Ready to Fly” was recorded at the legendary Rockfield Studios In Monmouth, Wales, previously used by Oasis, The Stone Roses and even Queen, with 2 bonus tracks recorded at Toe Rag in London. The album is a 11 track collection that shows a band in progression, experimenting with new ideas, and at the top of their game.
They have joked in the past about struggling to all fit on the same stage together at the same time , but the self titled “Well Robed Delinquents” have a chemistry and gang like mentality that just works.
Onstage at the sold out album launch show at The Joiners in Southampton, a venue the band refer to as their “Cavern Club”
(Photo by Carleen Curtis)
Their massive debut was an indie/mod rock 'n' roll good time record, heavily influenced by the 60s. This is still embedded in their sound (for example on Lord Please Show Me The Way To Go) but this album also brings in a range of experimentation, and the Keyboards/psychedelic sounds ( “Feels Like I’m Dreaming But It’s Real” or “Kaleidoscope Eyes” ) bring a new sound and evolution to their music.
Are You Ready to Fly, released on Detour Records, is, from the first play a record that instantly grabs you. Classic Rising vibes rub through the whole listen, but the album is less “Laddy” than is predecessor. This is certainly helped by the addition of the female backing voice of Emily Blackledge, whose vocals compliments a huge performance from singer Tommy Overington with great harmonies on “Feels Like I’m Dreaming But It’s Real” and the beautiful duet “Talk To Me”.
(Photo by Michelle Paul)
It's hard to pick a standout track as each one offers the listener something different. From indie bangers, ballads to psychedelic twists and turns. However, the epic Carpet Ride is sure to be a stand out “live” Rising track, and the inclusion of the massive “Free My Soul Tonight” as a bonus track is a very welcome addition!
The Rising are totally self funded and it’s testament to the quality of their musicianship, coupled with a phenomenal live reputation that this album was able to be made. Continually selling out live venues in their local area has enabled them to record one of Merc’s albums of the year. This could well be the one that propels them to the next level.
Fresh, exciting and different, this is a good time record that makes you want to fill your glass and get involved.
Full of swagger and big tunes, it comes Highly Recommended by Merc Clothing, Great British songwriting done very well.
Take it to the moon!
Words By Richie Kyle
Photos by Carleen Curtis & Michelle Paul