STRANGERS ON A TRAIN – Strangers On A Train (Private Pressing)

This is Strangers On A Train’s second demo CD, and even though my review of their first was not that generous I gave this one a fair hearing, and was quite pleasantly surprised. They still peddle their influences as Stones, Zeppelin, Sabbath, and Queen, and I can still hear nothing of any of those bands in their music, but at least these five songs show a great improvement in the songwriting of the band, and something of their own sound starts to appear in the tracks. ‘Three Deep On Cunningham’ is a good bluesy rocker to start with, and ‘Reality TV’ is a power ballad that manages not to be overblown and really hits the mark. ‘Out Of The Rain’ has some good organ and guitar work, and with a slow verse and upbeat chorus it evokes the sense, if not the volume, of grunge. ‘Shine’ is another slower song and has a particularly memorable middle eight with some nice guitar and organ duelling. ‘Love Without Addiction’ closes the disc with an effective ballad, showing that Josh Reece has a much better voice when he is not straining to be heard over the power chords. Overall, an overtly American rock band, perhaps a little set in the 70’s, but fine musicians with some good songs, and apparently a stage show verging on the Funkadelic. The only thing going against them is that I have heard an awful lot of music like this in my time, and they really need that little something extra to catapult them into the big-time. Individual band member’s influences include My Bloody Valentine, Muse, P J Harvey, and The Aphex Twin, and if you heard a song by any one of those artists you would know straight away who it was. Unfortunately, Strangers On A Train don’t yet have that unique sound that would make them stand out, but this disc is still worth a listen while they try to find it. Contact them on