On the night Ashplant played a majority of the record live (playing lead guitar and singing along to a self recorded backing track) but now I’ve finally had a chance to listen to the album itself.
A surprisingly atmospheric opening leads into a solid driving rocker of a track, lead single Get Under My Skin. This sets the tone nicely with an old school rocking feel and, within the lyrics, something of a sense of angst and feeling, even if the vocal delivery doesn’t quite transmit them.
Hold On You then adds some blues and boogie to the mix while third track, The Weather Of February, sounds like as song Status Quo could have written as, across the whole album, Dan wears his influences loud and proud.
Can’t Deny brings an acoustic side to things, though develops into another middle of the road rocker and I have to admit that, by Bend Over Backwards, it does all start to merge into one a little too much.
Penultimate track Reminiscin’ shows hints of variety as it develops something of a more modern indie rock groove before Maybe One Day closes things with something of a syrupy acoustic ballad (another song about the weather too).
While Ashplant’s vocal delivery often doesn’t quite reach what it feels like he wants it to, the music is about as spot on as you could want for a middle of the road rock record.
This is all the more impressive as it’s all played, written and produced by Dan himself, with assistance from the team at Apocalypse Studios, and his guitar playing in particular really stands out across the whole album.
Much like at the album launch though I couldn’t help but think this could all sound more complete with a full band bringing their energy to it, but it’s hard to dispute the enthusiasm and talent that leads to one person making a complete record like Dan has done with No Nonsense.