Cats In Space – Atlantis
Harmony Factory/Cargo Records UK
Release Date: 27/11/2020
Running Time: 46:08
Review by Tsarina Wilson
Just when you think nothing is going to be good in 2020 with all that’s gone on, Cats In Space bounce back and rescue the year, with “Atlantis”, their epic new album. It’s firmly in my top 3 albums of the year, and to be fair, they all run at equal first place. If you want an album to blow away the cobwebs, pick you up, and make you feel good, then this is the number one album to go to.
This is Cats In Space fourth studio album, and it’s as puuuurrrrfect as ever (sorry couldn’t resist). It sees new frontman Damien Edwards, who was one of the stars of Jeff Wayne’s “War of the Worlds” bring an amazing singing voice to add to the talents that Cats In Space already contain. Cats In Space released their first album, “Too Many Gods”, in 2015, and followed it with “Scarecrow” in 2017. Then, after the brilliant “Cats Live” in 2018, recorded live at the Cardiff Motorpoint Arena, they released “Daytrip To Narnia” (which I had the pleasure to review). Their whole sound just blew me away and I honestly didn’t think there was much they could improve on. Oh, how wrong I was!
There have been a couple of changes within the band. When Paul (Manzi) said farewell, vocalist Mark Pascall joined. During this time, the band played the London Palladium, then headed overseas, putting in some real hard graft, that included 2 albums, 2 tours, and a Christmas hit, all packed into one crazy year. Then, when 2020 turned weird, the guys knew the one thing the whole world needed was some uplifting, heart pounding, good feeling music. Enter Damien, and with him on board they embarked on their mission to bring some musical joy back to us all. And I’m so glad they did, I needed something to get my claws into! Produced by the band’s songwriter and guitarist, Greg Hart, and engineered and mixed by Ian Caple (Simple Minds, Tindersticks), this new album is definitely the antidote I needed to 2020.
“Atlantis” starts with ‘Dive’, a great instrumental, complete with submarine “dive, dive” sound effects! Yes, I know it’s the tracks name, but when you’re not quite expecting it, it’s a bit of a surprise. This gives a peek into what’s to come over the 45 or so minutes of this album: guitar, drums, synthesizers, bass, and who knows what else!
Damien’s vocals, which are so powerful and expansive, are a total compliment to this already a great band. They’re crisp and clear, and can be powerful, but also soft, often hitting notes that makes the speakers rattle. But they don’t take anything away from the harmonisations which are superb.
‘Spaceship Superstar’ has all the whistles and bells, plus some noises that take you back to the old space invader games machines! It also has a real 80’s rock feel to it. You will soon be tapping your foot to the track! It’s lively, fun, and so full of energy. The synthesizers are a great twist here too, and with the bass, and guitar riffs, each holding their own within the track, it just keeps giving and giving.
‘Sunday Best’, to me, almost had a hint of ‘Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon’(Queen). It’ll have you dancing round the house, with its up-tempo, feel good factor. Again, the vocals and harmonising are impeccable. This, along with other tracks, will have crowds bouncing when we get back to being able to go to concerts again!
My favourite track has to be ‘Marionette’, which starts off at a slower tempo, then, just when you think “this is it”, all hail the guitar riffs, bouncing bass and great drumming, twisted in with synths! Then everything goes back slow. These guys twist and turn throughout the album.
Every track on “Atlantis” deserves its place. They are all a unique blend of exceptional song writing, orchestration, and harmonies. It’s endlessly playable, and has a perfect treasure of melodies within each track. The guys have a wealth of experience, and this bursts through, not only with the masterful vocals, or the band’s overall performance, but within the songwriting and musical arrangements, too.
One final shout out has to be to Mike Moran, and his orchestra, who took part on the album, and helped to make it as awesome as it is. This is an album packed with songs that will transport you away to your own “Atlantis”. The blend of older styles, and futuristic sounds, will have you playing it over and over again. Cats In Space are hoping to be back out on tour in 2021, in both the UK, and overseas, and I can’t wait.
02. Spaceship Superstar
04. Sunday Best
05. Listen To The Radio
06. I Fell Out Of Love With Rock ‘n Roll
08. Queen Of The Neverland
09. Magic Lovin’ Feelin’
10. Can’t Wait For Tomorrow
11. Seasons Change
Damien Edwards – (Jeff Wayne’s War of The Worlds)- Lead & Backing vocals
Greg Hart – (Asia, Mike Oldfield, Moritz)-Guitars, acoustic guitars, vocals, tubular bells, Moog
Steevi Bacon – (Robin Trower)- Drums, percussion, timpani, harmonica, whistles
Andy Stewart – (Moritz)-Piano, electric piano, synthesizers
Dean Howard – (Ian Gillian, Bad Company)-Guitars, slide guitars
Jeff Brown – (Sweet)-Bass guitars, vocals
Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Tsarina Wilson and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.