Ginger Wildheart And The Sinners – Wasted Times and Lately Always

Ginger Wildheart And The Sinners - Wasted Times - artwork

Over the last couple of years, as the increasingly fractious rollercoaster that was The Wildhearts seemingly ground to a permanent halt, it was clear that Ginger Wildheart already had something else in the works (when doesn’t he) in the form of a new band building on some of his solo work (notably Ghost From The Tanglewood and The Pessimist’s Companion), Ginger Wildheart & The Sinners.

With a debut album due in the autumn 2022 through Steven Van Zandt’s (yes, the E Street Band’s own Little Steven) record label Wicked Cool Records (and Ginger’s own Round Records) two singles have so far emerged, Wasted Times in May and Lately Always at the end of July.

Wasted Times is an instantly infectious slice of what I can only describe as ‘Geordie country boogie rock’.

Ginger Wildheart And The Sinners band
Ginger Wildheart And The Sinners

Taking some of Ginger’s past musical preoccupations and building on them, what he, along with the new band, have created goes all out with the country rock feel to great effect including some spot on harmonies and a terrifically twang-y lead guitar solo.

Ginger’s voice comes to the fore in the harmonies and sounds better than it has in sometime, possibly with this style suiting him more than the recent angrier Wildhearts stuff (though that still has a brilliantly brutal visceral quality I wouldn’t ever deny).

The single is backed with a live track, The Words Are Gonna Have To Wait, that, if I didn’t know better, I would have thought was a standard studio recording and it certainly helps to suggest that this is already a formidable band who are surely only going to get even better the more they work together.

Ginger Wildheart And The Sinners - band live at 2000 Trees 2022
Ginger Wildheart And The Sinners at 2000 Trees Festival 2022

While more considered in pace than the a-side, the same style and tone remain though the harmonies that come along with the lead vocal are more on a level serving to show them off to even great effect.

Lately Always then shows off a more acoustic based, folky country, kind of feel telling a tale of what feels a little like a kind of unrequited love, but from a very different (and, dare I say it, more grown up) angle to most songs on the subject with a solid dose of hopefulness thrown into the mix that is always encouraging to hear.

While it has less of a boogie element than Wasted Time it again comes in the same vein with this really feeling like a new complete band rather than part of Ginger’s ongoing solo work.

With that, along with the other two tracks, it continues in the songwriter’s ‘heart on sleeve’ approach that, while maybe not for everyone, brings a real sense of truth and honesty that is always refreshing and has me really looking forward to the full album.

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