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CHRISTOPHER RAYSON
www.christopherrayson.com
It's Been Going On is Christopher Rayson's debut solo release, following the seemingly acrimonious split from his twin brother, with whom he used to record and perform, and which this record documents. Rayson has written all of the compositions and also provides vocals and plays guitar. The other musicians are uncredited.

This is a very short album, with nine tracks clocking in at around 27 minutes. Interestingly, it would appear that there are meant to be ten songs, as lyrics for this many are provided in the accompanying booklet and are listed on the back cover. 'Growing Apart' seems to be the one that missed the cut!

The songs that do appear on the album have simple, straightforward arrangements, with only vocals, guitar, bass and minimal slashes of piano/keys and it is the lyrics, as previously mentioned, documenting tough times in Rayson's personal life, that provide the substance, depth and punch. To my mind, the standout tracks are the opener, 'This Don't Sit Good With Me', which possesses a driving beat and is toe-tappingly catchy; the title track, somewhat redolent of Dire Straits in the guitar playing; and 'Message Taken Not Understood', which opens with what sounds like a drum machine and has a sort of 80s electronic feel to it.

Making this record must have been a cathartic experience for Rayson, given its subject matter, and it is a little surprising that he is comfortable with it being made available for public consumption. Having said that, it is a competently constructed and produced release, with a generally pleasant, and not at all heavy, musical feel that is at odds with the lyrical direction, and it perhaps deserves the exposure it will hopefully receive. It took me a few listens to appreciate the artistry, particularly the guitar work, on offer here but it was worth persevering!
LABEL:
FORMAT:
CRC
Album
IT'S BEEN GOING ON
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Review by Dave Uphill
RUNNING TIME:
27:49
RELEASE DATE:
30th June 2017
TRACK LISTING
1) This Don't Sit Good With Me
2) No Big Secret
3) It's Been Going On
4) It Is What It Is
5) Message Taken Not Understood
6) Not Listening
7) Growing Apart
8) Living the Dream
9) Believe It Or Not
10) Who's To Say What's Next
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
UK
"...a competently constructed and produced release, with a generally pleasant, and not at all heavy, musical feel that is at odds with the lyrical direction..."
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