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CD REVIEW: This August Night by Steve Hutchinson

Co-founder of UK’s premiere Moody Blues tribute band, Blue Onyx back in 2006 Steve Hutchinson is well versed when it comes to music and performing. Ray Thomas, retired founder member of the Moody Blues even called Steve’s voice “great” after seeing him perform. However, when that came to an end several years later, he decided he had to continue-on with music. Come 2014 he dropped a couple records, including a Christmas album. Now he’s back with his latest, This August Night. “Timeless Wonder” reached the semi-finals of the 2016 US Song of the Year.And that’s the track in which the whole album is built around, so it best fits in the opening slot. I’m not saying it’s the best track on the album though, I’m just saying it edges more of them than not. There’s others that rival or maybe even top it. But it’s important to focus on “Timeless Wonder” for all it’s worth. This isn’t your daddy’s easy listening or soft rock. It’s jazz and pop infused rock at its finest, with the saxophone topping it all off nicely. The vocals and lyrics meet seamlessly for an overall soothing track that anyone would be proud of. There are no flaws in this song.

The next track, “And So It Goes” doesn’t eclipse any of the same magic, but it keeps the mood intact. And the songwriting quality can’t be denied, so it holds its place up very well after such a grand opening.  It’s just a little flat by comparison. Getting back on track with the slower-paced “Truth And Lies” as it follows a narrative vocal pattern that keeps you interested the whole time. It’s all about life itself being full of both the truth and the lies we all see, hear and feel. A few shapes and sizes are described to comprehend the heaviness of it all, while it is still delivered in a light-hearted manner.

“Going For The Gold” sounds like an anthem for the Olympics or any situation where high stakes apply. But it’s an inspiring song for all purposes and that’s evident by the second verse. This is excellent, especially if you like anthems. Steve Hutchinson writes home a winner with this, as I can imagine it opening any game or even being performed at one. And things stay the course with a song entitled “Life Begins At 50” and as the lyrics go, “and anywhere else.” This is one of the more inspirational songs as well, which make the two a perfect little enjoyable combo.

Things get “Bittersweet” with a sweeping acoustic ballad that keeps the mix flowing just right, and features some of the best vocal work behind it. It’s not the highest but also not the lowest time on the disc, and neither is “Might As Well be You” because they’re as good as the rest of the tracks, they just take a small break between a lot more action to be had. But “Never Going To Be The Same” and “August” answer back with two of the best efforts on offer. They’re the featured tracks along with the award winning opening cut. I found those three to be most extraordinary, and the rest to check out perfectly around them.

I-TUNES: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/this-august-night/id1141629016

by Kevin Webber

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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