Solid Rock House Records
Three years on from Elegant Stealth, Wishbone Ash are back with the same personnel, and a real return to form. Guitarist/ vocalist Andy Powell may be the last remaining member from the original band, but his playing has always been a huge part of the definitive sound. Muddy Manninen has been the second lead guitarist since 2004, so is also well established. More of a Laurie Wisefield than a Ted Turner, he gets a good outing on Deep Blues. Take It Back is pure Ash with vocal and guitar harmonies pitched exactly where they should be. Strange ( How Things Come Back Around) has a more contemporary feel, and lyrically seems to be telling the story of the band – a fine song and very nicely constructed. The mixture of classic Ash- style material and today’s band is what this album is clearly all about, so while the title track is more representative of recent material, the opening of All There Is To Say is reminiscent of Throw Down The Sword. It’s probably the best way for the band to go, and there’s so much that’s new here, it really is a fine release for Ash’s army of fans.