Jim Lockey and The Solemn Sun are a four-piece rock band from Cheltenham who comprise of Jim Lockey (Guitar/ vocals), Andy Oliveri (Bass), Simon Cripps (Drums) and Chris Capewheel (Guitar / vocals). They release their latest long player `Colour` this month after a nine-year hiatus.

Opening track `Reno` according to the singer is “an ambitious love song celebrating the first spark, the connection, and endless possibilities of what lies ahead. It’s both the resolution of a past life and the beginning of a new one.” It`s a thoughtful reflective almost restrained anthem that maybe mirrors the anticipation on this new relationship. There`s a more questioning maybe self-examining theme that runs through `Medicine` which is pretty fast paced and upbeat although lyrically it deals with the narrator`s part in a failing relationship. The pain endured is almost tangible in the vocal delivered.   

`Conditional Love` is another track that races along almost on a search for what it is to experience a romance not based on restrictions, which appears to be what the singer has endured. We have a further number in `Mercy Wave` that seems to be about looking for pity rather than compassion.

Title track `Colour` bounces along and seems to be an acceptance of a relationship that has run its course and realising it`s time to move on. There`s a sense of defiance to `Weathering` not only lyrically but also musically with guitar riffs that are more forceful shared over a driving drumbeat.

 `Always` has that sense of things ain`t great but if we don`t discuss it it`ll be ok, but deep down it won`t, which is kind of epitomised by the music that accompanies the song. I thought it was a tender earworm of a number. The piano led `Shame` is a deeply reflective ballad on the end of a relationship and the need to move on with life.

`Trouble` is a kind of coming to terms with the inevitable signs that a breakup is imminent shared over an anxious musical soundscape. The album closes with `You & I` and is almost the light at the end of a tunnel heading into a brighter future.

The singer has come through a devastating and traumatic marital breakup and `Colour` seems to have been part of his process of dealing with it and moving on with his life. The album is at times difficult to listen to because of how personal it is but at the same time it must have been quite liberating and cathartic.

It`ll be interesting to see what follows this release.



Rating 7.5 / 10

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