Lead guitarist and manager of the rather excellent Smiths tribute act These Charming Men, Gavin Murphy has decided that imitation may not be the sincerest form of flattery after all and elected to produce an album of his own songs.

However, he can't or doesn’t try to escape the gravitational and generational pull of The Smiths and these tracks play to Murphy’s considerable flair as a guitar slinger on the likes of chirpy opener Into Temptation, which has the Rickenbacker ring of something from Meat is Murder. 

Elsewhere, Murphy’s croon is at its most Moz on the waltz-time chamber pop of A Curious Thing (shades of Vauxhall & I), and the affecting end of pier drama of Floating Free, while Finding My Way Back Home doubles down on the homage by sounding very like Smiths manques Gene.

Ably aided and abetted by his son Daragh, who produced three tracks here, and friends and co-writers Tony Kavanagh, John McGeer, and bassist Rob Malone (David Gray, Hot House Flowers), as that title suggests, 45 RPM sparkles with droll and wonderfully melodic minor pop nuggets. 

Moz and Marr are on his side. 


Alan Corr @CorrAlan2