Flash - 'Featuring Ray Bennett & Colin Carter'

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Flash - 'Featuring Ray Bennett & Colin Carter'

An ambitious collection of songs.

Flash were founded by lead vocalist Colin Carter, original Yes guitarist Peter Banks, bass player Ray Bennett, and drummer Mike Hough. The band released three well received albums in the 1970's, and played major venues like the 'Whiskey A Go-Go' and New York's 'Avery Fisher Hall'.

This new album, their first in 40 years, was recorded over a period of three years with Ray now on lead guitar and Colin on rhythm guitar, the band now featuring keyboardist Rick Daugherty, drummer Mark Pardy and bass player Wayne Carver.
'Night Vision' begins with a wash of strings and some beautiful harmony vocals, and the first musical comparison that came to mind was the 'Argus' period of Wishbone Ash. The song has a true sense of the epic, and the fluid guitar lines have a radio friendly sheen. Taking on the NIN song 'Hurt' is ambitious at best, yet Flash inject a strong feeling of melancholy and a super cool bass guitar groove that drives the song. The vocals have a dry sweetness to them that serves the lyrics of the song well. We head off into jazz rock territory with 'Something So Dark' which at times is a clutter of ideas that never quite gel together.

From the band's third studio album 'Out Of Her Hands', we have a re-recording of 'Manhattan Morning'. Having never heard the original, I have nothing to compare, and to be honest, the song is a little directionless for my taste. I enjoyed the ambient introduction on 'Grand Canyon', and the song takes some twists and turns before the more sinister guitars and vocals head in a new direction.

We continue into new age territory as 'Morpheum' guides us on a journey of various moods and feelings of what is quite an impressive instrumental piece. 'Richard Of Venice' is a dreamy instrumental piano led piece. The song evokes a feeling of peacefulness, and brings to an end an ambitious collection of songs.

Ray Paul

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