When Mercury recording artists Noah and the Whale had a hiatus in 2014 it was greeted by their fans as something of a tragedy…and it was. Many of us thought it may be the last we heard from the band, but now in 2015 Fred Abbott, singer and guitarist with the group, has released a solo album and he is helped by colleagues Matt "Urby Whale" Owens, Tom Hobden and Michael Petulla.
His album, cunningly entitled Serious Poke, is a cracking record. Fred announces his intent from the opening track, ‘Adrenaline Shot,’ and given its title you can probably imagine what it sounds like…and it does. It rocks, but above all else it is a very "hooky" song, a feature of all ten tracks on the CD. Standouts include the aforementioned ‘Adrenaline Shot,' ‘Learn About Love,' the slow and brooding ’Still Told a Lie,' ‘Lucky People’ and ‘Funny How Good it Feels.' Think a British Tom Petty and you’ll get the vibe.
According to Fred, "When Noah And The Whale went on hiatus in January 2014 I headed back to British Grove Studios in West London, were we had recorded the 'Heart of Nowhere' album, and started recording some of my own songs with engineer Martin Hollis. Over the year and with the help of Urby, Mike and Tom from NATW and some other talented friends, we fleshed those songs out into the album that became 'Serious Poke.' Some of the songs are many years old, some were formed out of our notorious soundcheck jams while on the road, and some are brand new. They were all immense fun to make, and I hope you enjoy listening to them."
Fred and the band will be playing a special album launch gig at The Borderline in London on Friday 31 July. Tickets are limited, so go here for details.