The Lost Notes Lowlifes & high times

Preview: The Lost Notes – Lowlifes & high times out December 5th 2020

There are coincidences, amusing ironies, and then there is life itself. The cd to be reviewed was missing in the post for a worrying period, until that tell-tale muffled crump, as the elusive bubble wrapped parcel landed without ceremony on the door mat. My understated intro to The Lost Notes album, Lowlifes and high times

The Introductory track – “Pieces of a Star” – is a warm and comforting song about returning home to a loved one. The song is also a comforting and warm song to introduce the album and for me, an introduction to the Lost Notes. The reassuring warmth of the guitar intro – reminiscent of Cat Stevens – lulls and it is easy to get lost in the crisp notes and even easier to lose oneself in the comforting vocal harmonies. The hushed hymnal track also alerts you to how serious the Mosely based band are about their lyrics…

Accordingly, the glossy lyric booklet is framed proudly inside the stylish cd case and this gesture highlights for me the importance of the words to this band and their songs; the lyrics are loaded with considered meaning, naked emotion and pure sentiment and gild this trove of songs as a result.

Treasure the lyrics of Holding On and rejoice in the imagery of the track: “It’s like the sound of morning church bells and the familiar blackbird song…”  How quintessentially English and how easy it is to appreciate this most English of scenarios, perhaps I am holding on to a version of England for nostalgic convenience but we all need to hold on to something – as the song encapsulates. 

The jazz inspired paean to a one side relationship is explored in Done with Waiting, as our heroine exposes her true feelings with being ignored but is determined to walk away with her head held high: “Though I’m a lioness, If I wait I lose my pride.” Sublime. Research shows male lions are inherently lazy and acknowledge Lionesses do most of the hunting and nurturing in reality…gentlemen, think on! 

A lot of thought has gone into the packaging of this elegant debut album. The urbane packaging has clearly been deliberated over in the art department and is both tactile and aesthetically pleasing. The 50s influenced imagery throughout, in muted colours, hints at vitality, movement and the enjoyment for celebrating life. Much like the songs themselves…

Still I Come is a “staring out of the window” song of distraction that offers words of reassurance and empathy. A casually driven ditty that seeks to gift solace to one that is struggling or feeling alone.  Someone “lost in time”, someone “twisted like a vine” or someone who could be reading this paragraph right now, for instance…

In an instance, I’ll Just Hold You” quickly becomes as familiar as a song as the sentiments expressed in the lyrics. Maudlin, yes. Melancholy, yes. Depressing, No. A celebration of friendship and companionship in a musical opus that will no doubt enhance an evening around the fireside, in the shadowy darkness of the snug as you nurse a pint of Butty or an overpriced glass of vinegary pinot.

The upbeat rhythm of Goodbye, yesterday wrong foots the listener – up-temp and animated the song is – however, the message is very different. Questioning the production of our food, questioning the practice of landfill, questioning the policy of “slash and burn” the song articulates how the past has impacted on the present and how we need to say goodbye to what went before. If the majority of the album is about the personal then this track is platforming the need to look at the worldly and our collective future!

I don’t resent the postman, he’s a pleasant chap, and I’m sure there is a very genuine reason why the CD was teasingly late. We know that life delivers its unconditional low points and high times that’s a given, however, one universal truth is also a given: “Anything worth having is worth waiting for!” Consequently, I don’t think the album by this Moseley five piece will be lost on their well-earned audience.      

By: The Swilgate Scuttler

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