Sunshine Walkers, subtitled The Best Of Kimberley Rew and Lee Cave-Berry, does what it says on the tin and gives a snapshot, a tip of the iceberg overview of some highlights from the career of an unsung hero of British popular music.
Release Date: 17th July 2020
Label: KL Recording
Format: CD / DL
A sign of your standing amongst your peers is when you can get the likes of Mark Ellen, Robyn Hitchcock and The Bangles’ Vicki Petersen to write testimonials for the album sleeve.
In fact, it might just be easiest to crib some of their quotes that include “guitar pop god“, “as warm and comforting as flask of tea in an Austin Cambridge” and “Lee Cave-Berry’s bass is Cambridge’s secret weapon.“
So – Walking On Sunshine, Katrina & The Waves, The Soft Boys, Eurovision ’97 and should you need any more confirmation that this man is a legend, simply Google ‘Eurovision 2020’. An event where every contestant took part remotely in a joint performance of the UK’s winning 1997 composed by…guess who? Rew-fest. ‘Kimberley Rew – remember my name’ should be the phrase but he’s far too humble for that.
However, we’re some distance from Eurovision glitz as he sings that “Dogs don’t get religion, Dogs don’t go to church” on the opening The Dog Song that sets the scene and the tone for the next hour. The good time rock and roll opens the box on an Aladdin’s Cave of goodies from the Rew and Rew/cave-Berry catalogues.
The jug band feel about the lonesome Backing Singer Blues is the first of genre-busting set. Boxes are ticked remorselessly. Songs with a poppy bounce (The End Of Our Rainbow), fiery new wave (My Baby Does Her Hairdo Long), R&B (English Road), jangly guitar pop a la Byrds/R.E.M (Hey War Pig) rockabilly (Flat Cat) and marching funk (Some Days You Eat The Bear). There’s even a Christmas song and more; talking of which, the twenty-one songs play out like your Christmas selection box of chocolatey treats.
Not surprisingly, there’s a stellar cast all ready to add their own particular embellishment; musicians that include Glenn Tilbrook, Peter Holsapple and Robyn Hitchcock himself.
There seems very little that this man can turn his hand to.I also get to roll out my favourite phrase. One reserved for special occasions – not a duff song on it. Yes, we all know McCartney, Dylan and Joni Mitchell are songwriting geniuses but how about a big clap on the back for the likes of Boo Hewerdine and Kimberley Rew. The closing message of “The simple pleasures are the best” sums up this collection rather splendidly. An utter delight.
Listen to Stomping All Over The World from The Bible Of Bop here: