It’s been a busy 18 months or so for Keith Leahy: the gatekeeper to the kingdom of ‘90s English melodic rock outfit The Petal Falls. After the rights to all material from the band reverted back to him a few years ago, and after some soul-searching, Leahy released the long-delayed (understatement of the year) debut album ‘Workin’ All Night Workin’ All Day’ – newly re-mastered – to great acclaim and some fantastic streaming figures. Any doubts that Leahy had about putting himself back out there quickly evaporated and album number two ‘All These Years’ was subsequently remastered and released, and like the debut album, the sophomore effort is a bit special.
In the same vein as ‘Workin’ All Night Workin’ All Day’, ‘All These Years’ is also driven by songcraft, as well as some of the biggest hooks and melodies heard from a non-Scandinavian melodic rock band in some time. Album opener ‘Between My Brother And Me’ is a brooding, slow-burning gem that kicks off proceedings in fine style. Subtle keyboard arrangements run through the background of the track and lay down a dark, smokey atmosphere, matched by the “breaking-down-the-walls” lyrics. Leahy’s crystal clear vocal enunciation is enhanced by stellar production and mastering, so much so that it’s almost like Leahy is right there next to the listener. This album is exquisite through a decent pair of cans, Sennheiser of course. Need a reference point for what to expect with ‘All These Years’? How about the lush Simple Minds-meets-Toto-meets-Mike & The Mechanics tinges of ‘I Won’t Be There’? The simple guitar tones are crucial, the guitar solos midsong and towards the conclusion are fiery, and the drum work from Robin Tucker is exemplary (as it is throughout the entire album). Or the Glass Tiger bounce-factor of ‘Take Me Home’? Or the impassioned title track where lyrical comparisons could be made with ‘New Jersey’-era Bon Jovi? Great guitar sound on the latter, the backing vocals are perfect and never overpowering; instead, working alongside Leahy’s vocals to bring a touch of class to the party.
In an alternate universe, ‘Second Sight’ is playing over one of many love scenes in the original ‘Miami Vice’ TV show, and ‘In The Shadow of The Clan’ and ‘Liberated’ have been licensed to numerous movie productions, meaning that Leahy is sitting back chuckling as he adds another wing to the mansion. Sadly, that’s not the case, but we can but dream, yes?
Discover ‘All These Years’, here.
Review – Dave