Album Review: CAST - Kicking Up The Dust


Album Review: CAST - Kicking Up The Dust

Cast first appeared in the mid 90s during the Britpop era with a string of hit singles and the classic ‘All Change’ album that became the highest selling debut album in the history of the Polydor label at the time. They released 3 more albums before going their separate ways just after the release of their experimental album ‘Beetroot’.

Cast got back together in 2012 and released the acclaimed Troubled Times album. In December 2015 and February 2016, Cast celebrated the 20th anniversary of their classic album All Change, with two sold-out shows at the historic Liverpool Philharmonic Hall where they played the record in its entirety accompanied by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

Cast return this week with brand new album Kicking up the Dust. The new album was recorded at The Motor Museum in Liverpool and was produced by studio resident Alistair Groves. Kicking up the Dust was finished and intended to be released a lot earlier. The band intended to self-release the album until they got a new management deal with Creation Management and a record deal with Warners which pushed the release back until now.

The seed of the album began when John Power (guitar/vocals) and Liam ‘Skin’ Tyson (lead guitar) went into the studio and recorded an early version of Baby Blue Eyes. The rest of the band joined later working on unfinished ideas and built the songs around them. This was a new way of working for the band. Soon they had enough songs and ideas that they decided to record a brand new full-length Cast album. Kicking up the Dust is a very contemporary sounding record. Some songs from the album were revealed last year. Do That, Roar the recent single Paper Chains and the early version of Baby Blue Eyes have been available to hear for a while on the band's website.

The album gets off to a storming start with the title track Kicking up the Dust and the mighty Roar. Do That has a groove; it's contemporary and a perfect pop song which I have had on constant rotation since its release late last year. It’s one of the best songs John Power has ever written. Paper Chains is a classic country soul ballad with a hint of Motown. All Cast albums have a mix of up-tempo songs and classic, old ballad style songs in the vein of Walkaway, Magic Hour and I'm So Lonely. This record is no different from Every Little Thing You Do. "Every little thing you say every little thing you do will always be a part of me always be a part of you." It's simply gorgeous and atmospheric.

Baby Blue Eyes has been re-recorded by the whole band to fit the contemporary sound of the other songs which certainly gives the song a lift to make it an album highlight. Liam ‘Skin’ Tyson's guitar soars over the top of the track, - brilliant stuff. All band members are on top form here and their musicianship shines through on each song. former La’s member Jay Lewis is superb on bass, Keith O’Neill is possibly one of the best British drummers around, while Liam ‘Skin’ Tyson is a legend on guitar, and John Power just keeps churning out belter tunes one after the other. There are definitely some classics on here.

Kicking up the Dust is a thoroughly enjoyable album. Like all Cast albums, some songs jump out at you and some songs take repeated listens before their brilliance is revealed. A must listen.

Xsnoize Author
Mark Millar is the founder of XS Noize and looks after the daily running of the website as well as conducting interviews for the XS Noize Podcast. Mark's favourite album is Achtung Baby by U2.

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