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Bob Gallie Bob Gallie
Album: Bob Gallie
Label: Self Released
Tracks: 8

Originally hailing from the mining stronghold of Aberdare in South Wales, Bob Gallie has taken a long and winding road through life. Formerly the vocalist for Radio Moscow (with Brian Tatler of Diamond Head fame), supporting the likes of Dr Feelgood, it's fair to say that four years of constant gigging took their toll on him. After a long time away from music, he's now back and writing songs to make sense of his life.

While Bob plans to record and release a full album later this year, this comes across as more than just a placeholder, or a dipped toe in the water. There are two live tracks recorded at The Ritz Acoustic Club in Burnham on Sea (Oh Mexico and Cathedral Skies), and the rest were recorded in one or two takes. There are no other musicians, no other instruments, just Bob and his trusty guitar.

Given all this, you would perhaps be forgiven for expecting something rough and thrown together, with the musical equivalent of gaffer tape applied liberally. But you would be very wrong. Instead what we have is a raw and emotional CD which perfectly showcases Bob's talents as a songwriter and performer. These are songs that have clearly been performed and perfected in front of live audiences, and the way this is recorded puts you in the front row.

In a CD full of highlights, there are still two that particularly stand out. Please Don't Cry is full of emotional anguish and pain, the song of someone baring his soul with vocals that come out bitter and bloodied. My own personal favourite was one of the live tracks, Cathedral Skies, which feels full of nostalgia and poignancy. This is the kind of strong collection of music that everyone is bound to have a different favourite; Blood And Bones, Under The Sun, Oh Mexico… every song is full of wonderful moments.

Until the album arrives later in the year, this can only be picked up at Bob's live gigs. If you get the opportunity, go and see him, on this form it's bound to be a wonderful evening of musical brilliance.

Adam Jenkins