Fiction Plane

Everything Will Never Be OK

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The official Fiction Plane bio that MCA's publicity department sent to the media with Everything Will Never Be OK doesn't mention the fact that Joe Sumner, the London-based outfit's lead singer, is the adult son of former Police vocalist Sting -- obviously, MCA isn't trying to exploit the Sting connection or market Sumner as "Junior Sting." Not that the information isn't a matter of public record; in England, publications have been quick to point out that Sting is Sumner's father. But anyone who expects Sumner to emulate his dad is bound to be disappointed; he doesn't try to sing like "Junior Sting," and Fiction Plane is far from a Police tribute band. Truth be told, Fiction Plane's sound is closer to Bono and U2. Sumner's vocals have a somewhat Bono-ish quality, and Fiction Plane have obviously been influenced by U2's melodies. But Sumner and his colleagues aren't going out of their way to emulate U2, the Police or anyone else. While U2 is a strong melodic influence, Fiction Plane's lyrics are a lot more cynical. U2 have always had a certain idealism -- intellectually, Bono no doubt realizes that he isn't going to save the world, but damned if he isn't going to try. Ultimately, U2 is an optimistic band even though they have their share of dark songs; no one will accuse "Sunday Bloody Sunday" of being an exercise in feel-good escapism. Fiction Plane, however, bring a much more melancholy, world-weary outlook to their alternative pop/rock material. They also bring a strong sense of craftsmanship to the table; produced by David Kahne, this is an impressively consistent and promising effort. Yes, Fiction Plane is led by the son of a superstar, but Everything Will Never Be OK demonstrates that Sumner is an impressive pop/rock craftsman in his own right. [The CD was also released with a bonus track.]

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