Review: Collateral – Collateral
Roulette Media Records (Feb 21st 2020)
Reviewer: Dan Mann
Kent based rockers Collateral will release their debut album on February 21st, coming after 2018’s ‘4 Shots!‘ EP. The new album contains one track from said EP, the single ‘Midnight Queen‘.
Before we delve into the album’s contents, a bit of back history so to speak. Originally formed as the Angelo Tristan Band, named after vocalist Angelo Tristan, they toured the US, and played numerous live dates, including Fibrofest in 2017 and had various line up changes. Move forward to 2018 and the band became Collateral with Angelo and bassist Jack Bently-Smith being joined by drummer Ben Atkinson and guitarist Todd Winger. Since 2018 the band has grown from strength to strength, playing the likes of Ramblin’ Man and the Bon Jovi Cruise, as well as numerous other gigs and building on an already solid reputation.
And so to the album itself which kicks off with the single ‘Mr Big Shot‘, which on the album sounds much richer, with a fuller sound, which in my opinion is a much needed boost and really gives the track a kick.
‘Promiseland‘ starts with a catchy riff and a pounding bass and drum backing before the main body of the song fills out, foot stomping with great harmonies.
‘Merry Go Round‘ will raise the Bon Jovi comparisons that are repeatedly mentioned in reviews etc. It’s something which could be a win or a curse, thankfully the former, as yes it is Jovi like, but also with echoes of Royal Court Of China, all delivered with Collateral‘s own stamp on it.
‘In It For Love‘ sounds like a classic 80’s song title and the song certainly has leanings in that direction, with some nice keyboard in fills.
Next is another of the album’s singles, ‘Lullaby‘. Okay I’m going to be honest and say this particular song just hasn’t grabbed me as much as the band’s other material, however it’s a song that always goes down well with a live crowd so what do I know!
As mentioned at the start ‘Midnight Queen‘ has been brought over from the ‘4 Shots! EP‘, and rightly so as it’s the track that really helped garner the band’s reputation via airplay. Light and fluffy with a real AOR’ish vibe, it is perfect radio fodder and you cannot help but find your foot tapping and head nodding along.
And so we reach ballad time with ‘Get Back To You‘. And what a great job the boys have made, certainly one of my favourites on the album, it sounds like it’s taken from their third or fourth album let alone the debut!
Tempo stepped back up for ‘Won’t Stop Me Dreaming‘, very commercial and would of been a better choice for single than ‘Lullaby‘ methinks, some lovely guitar work by Todd (a future axe hero), great harmonies, and no overblown drums and bass. Great stuff.
Alas we reach the final track, ‘About This Boy‘ a song that Angelo says is autobiographical. Again a song that has a real maturity, which highlights the journey Angelo and Co have travelled from before Collateral to now. Plenty of country influences, it is really a cross over track that will appeal to a multitude of music fans.
So there we have it. In conclusion I feel the album more than reflects the band’s influences and ambitions. The future certainly is bright for the boys and I for one am more than a little pleased.
A must buy and don’t miss a chance to see them live!