STEVE HARLEY – “UNCOVERED”

REVIEWER CHARLIE BRYAN

Steve Harley’s newly inaugurated Acoustic Band release thier new album “Uncovered” this week which include interpretations of nine painstakingly chosen songs created in many instances by peers and contemporaries of Steve, those with shared histories and some that he admired from afar.

 This diverse collection of Harley’s interpretations is in some ways an almanac rather than just a set of great tracks: Steve’s links with some of the songwriters go back to the very start of their careers: Bowie in Beckenham; Dylan throughout his early teens; Cat Stevens/Yusuf and Paul McCartney, both massive early influences. Added into the mix are two songs from Steve’s own incredible catalogue, reworked from the originals: ‘Love, Compared With You’ which now boasts a newly-composed third verse, plus ‘Only You’, played live for several years, but recorded here for the first time.

The band that performs this collection features Barry Wickens on viola, violin and acoustic guitar, Oli Hayhurst on double bass, Tom Hooper on percussion and the roots music legend, Martin Simpson, on guitar. Steve also sings a duet with the amazing Scottish singer, Eddi Reader. Steve is no stranger to acoustic music, having toured with his Acoustic Trio (as well as the full Cockney Rebel rock band, of course) for years now and receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award for Acoustic Music in 2018. The recording sessions for ‘Uncovered’ were a joy; full of passion, virtuosity and grit. As Steve says, ‘I was roaring with stamina and passion when I went in to sing the final versions. Sang all 11 in one and a half days. The hunger and desire to perform was almost primitive. Matt Butler (engineer) has recorded my voice up-close and unaffected. I sing out – but seem mostly restrained.’

Tracklistings :

1. Compared With You (Your Eyes Don’t Seem To Age)
2. Absolute Beginners
3. Ae Fond Kiss
4. Emma
5. How Can I Tell You?
6. I’ve Just Seen A Face
7. Lost Myself
8. Only You
9. Out Of Time
10. Star Of Belle Isle (feat. Eddi Reader)
11. When I Paint My Masterpiece

Stand out Track..Cat Stevens….. How can I tell you, Jagger & Richards ..Out of Time   and Traditional …Star of Belle Isle with Eddi Reader


Steve Harley has put together an eclectic mix of songs that purvey a message of love and affection.. this rebel has mellowed over the years,but his voice is as strong as ever…
Good listening  8/10

Product details
Audio CD (21 Feb. 2020)
Number of Discs: 1
Label: Absolute
ASIN: B082JQB36S
Other Editions: Vinyl |  MP3 Download

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