Album Review | Self Release | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 4/5
Best known for penning the pop classic “Walking on Sunshine” for his band Katrina and the Waves back in the mid-1980s, a song that remains a much played radio hit today, Kimberley Rew has enjoyed a varied musical career, having also served time with the legendary Soft Boys with Robyn Hitchcock in the late 1970s. Over the years the songs have kept on coming, even scoring a Eurovision winner in 1997 and in partnership with his wife, singer/bassist Lee Cave-Berry, produced several solo albums between them both, which this compilation concentrates on. Sunshine Walkers features over twenty feelgood tunes, from dog songs to cat songs, bear songs to pig songs and even the obligatory Christmas song, each showcasing some quintessentially English song writing.
Sharing the lead vocal duties throughout this compilation, both Kim and Lee are given their moment in the spotlight, with plenty of humour along the way, notably Kim’s music hall ditty “Bloody Old England” and Lee’s “Backing Singer Blues”, which puts that spotlight right on the out of the spotlight sidekicks of the world. Grumbling has never sounded so uplifting. Amongst the Chuck Berry licks, the Jerry Lee piano strides, the occasional nod towards Blondie, the B52s and Squeeze, the punky “Hey War Pig”, the funky “Some Days You Eat the Bear”, the reggae infused “The End of the Rainbow”, the Hendrix wah wah of “Flower Superpower” and the abundance of good time rock ‘n’ rollers throughout, there’s still room for one or two tender moments too, notably “The Safest Place” and “Happy Anniversary”. With an array of notable contributions, Robyn Hitchcock, Katrina Leskanich and Glenn Tilbrook amongst them, Sunshine Walkers will have you walking on sunshine from the opening few bars of “The Dog Song” through to the euphoric optimism of “Simple Pleasures”.
Choice Track: The End of Our Rainbow (NSV 506)