Derbyshire five-piece Smiling Ivy have built on their rising reputation as a live act by delivering a debut album that really hits the spot.
The band is made up of Jimmy Kohanzad, 26, bass, of Rowsley, Dan Hobson, 28, vocals/guitar, of Stanton-in-Peak, Ray Grandy, 26, saxophone/vocals, of Bakewell, Sam Dormer, 28, guitar/keyboard, of Buxton and Stevie Mac, 28, drums, of Buxton.
The album - Quick Sin Jukebox - is out via the Cool Beans label, and for, fans of their previous EPs, it delivers the goods, big-style.
The dozen tracks on Quick Sin Jukebox are the perfect showcase for their blend of ska, dub reggae, funk, punk and hip-hop.
With the addition of guest vocalist Shinny Ranks and trumpeter/trombonist James Atashroo, the band hit the spot time and time again, with their mix of memorable, offbeat lyrics, catchy music and Hobson’s distinctive vocal delivery.
From the more reflective Spent to the unusual but catchy Private Dreams and Public Nightmares (which sounds like a 1970s Tomorrow’s World episode set to a dub soundtrack - and that’s a good thing!) to the upbeat treats of Lab Rats and Phenomenon, it’s all here. A potent mix indeed.
Producer Alan Smyth has captured the immediacy and excitement of Smiling Ivy’s live set and blended it with just the right amount of studio-based sophistication to come up with an album that will appeal to existing fans and new converts. All in all, highly recommended.
See www.smilingivy.co.uk for more details on how to buy Quick Sin Jukebox.