Danny & The Champions of the World – Stay True

stay-true

Danny George Wilson is back with album number eleven, six with the wonderful Grand Drive, one solo release Famous Mad Mile and four with The Champions of the World – Chris Clarke, Paul Lush, Steve Brookes and Geoff Widdowson for Stay True the core line-up were joined in the studio by fellow ‘Champs’ and Beat Surrender favourites, Rosalie Deighton, Trevor Moss & Hannah-Lou and Dreaming Spires brothers Robin & Joe Bennett as well as pedal steel maestro Melvin Duffy and members of Ahab and London-based bluegrass outfit Foghorn Leghorn.

Stay True will be released in all formats and is available on and CD / Vinyl from Loose’s online store where you can pre-order ahead of the September 16th release – and I strongly recommend you do as it’s a fantastic collection of tunes and the best release yet from Danny and his band of brothers whose recordings just get better and better, this time distilling some of the finer elements from six decades of popular music and blending them into an irresistible collection of soul infused country roots through the eleven original tracks that never sound forced, rushed or shoed in and Stay True to the vision for the album which was recorded earlier this year over a five-day period at Reservoir Studios in North London with bass player Chris Clarke (ex Rockingbirds) and Danny himself at the helm “catching sleep on the control room sofa, recording deep into the night, friends and musicians dropping by, inspired by the great soul, country and rock n roll of Stax, Muscle Shoals, The Band, Dan Penn & Spooner Oldham, Dion DiMucci, Van Morrison…Ronnie Lane meets Ronnie Spector!”.

The album has an instant appeal kicking off with a perfect piece of autobiographical nostalgia that sets the stage perfectly for the album, the opener (Never Stop Building) That Old Space Rocket is Danny recalling hitchhiking with his father to a Fabulous Thunderbirds show and reminding us all of how events shape us and the importance and magic of dreams, before sliding effortlessly into track two Cold Cold World which is one highlight of many from the album.

Track three is real heartbreaker and the vocal highlight on the album a classic cut of blue-eyed soul with Danny’s vocal taking centre stage, track four seamlessly rolls out next over a steady backbeat with some lovely steel and guitar embellishment to accompany the singers entreatment to a loved one, by this time I’m struggling to listen to the rest of the album because I’m spending so much time hitting repeat on the tracks I’ve already enjoyed, but eventually I rock ‘n’ soul my way through the eleven tracks and can report back, and I know it’s clichéd and an oft used phrase but the album really is ‘all killer, no filler‘ and put together wonderfully well, I’m not sure how much the time was spent sequencing the album but it fits so very well together and has become my new favourite musical comfort blanket stitched together lovingly like a patchwork quilt it’s the sum of its parts – highly recommended and straight into top spot for my album of the year.

Champs

September
24 The Railway Hotel, SOUTHEND
25 Also Known As, BANBURY
26 The Chattery, SWANSEA
27 Windmill, BRIXTON
28 South Street Arts Centre, READING
29 Hare & Hounds, BIRMINGHAM
November
13 Old Oak Bar, CORK
14 Whelans, DUBLIN
15 The Goats Toe, Bangor, BELFAST
16 Cleeres, KILKENNY
20 Pivo Pivo, GLASGOW
22 Town Hall, STORNAWAY
24 The Cluny, NEWCASTLE
28 The Bullingdon, OXFORD
29 The Donkey, LEICESTER
30 The Palmeira, BRIGHTON
December
01 The Maze, NOTTINGHAM
03 The Railway, WINCHESTER

Champs recording

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