Brave Captain

The Fingertip Sessions, Vol. 1

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Born out of the mind of the classically experimental uber-monarch that was the Boo Radleys' Martin Carr, this tentative debut solo "mini-album" continues to fiddle with exhumed '60s rock and everyday Pet Sounds that defined his beloved -- yet underestimated -- original band. Clomping nostalgic choruses allow delightfully careless art rock wig-outs to spin off into engaging eccentricity and although there are moments that feel directly out of the Boo Radleys' back catalog (the "Hey Jude"-isms of "Raining Stones," the oddball C'mon Kids approach to "Big Red Control Machine"), it's the new exhibition of Carr's vocals that demand the most interest. Surely, they are far from a debacle; it's more that -- as in the bedroom ballad "Starfish" -- their reediness makes one instantly miss the high-voiced Sice of the past. For such reasons, The Fingertip Sessions, Vol. 1 is best left viewed as a teaser. Which is potentially both a good thing and a bad thing, depending on if Carr decides to lead or follow his more coarse, experimental attitudes.

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