‘Gasoline Rainbow Mile’ succeeds last year’s lockdown offering ‘Bandwagon’ and delivers more of the same ingredients. With an extra sprinkle of sugar on top.’

In many ways, the lockdown blues have propelled artists’ creativity and output to new heights. With two albums in as many years, Paul Canning certainly does not subvert the rule. Prolific songwriting.

A simplistic, yet melodic chord progression on the keys assisted with a pounding drum beat introduces the record with ‘Let Your River Take You Anywhere’. Guitars are absent but not for long, as the strings merge with Paul’s distinctive vocal to elevate the track.

‘Rocket’ follows with a more familiar acoustic sound accompanied with some witty wordplay;‘My lost is not your found, my junk is not another man’s gold’. ‘Rocket’ also boasts a gorgeous middle eight guitar solo and outro to follow. There’s so much to like here.

Without question, Paul’s ability to place emphasis on his melodies through his falsetto resonates on every track throughout ‘Gasoline Rainbow Mile’. Bar the instrumental perhaps…

The title track is up next, and a great title track it is. Some titles paint a picture, tell a story or just ask a question. Creating a sense of enigma before you’ve pressed play. Mission accomplished. After all, ‘Gasoline Rainbow Mile’ sounds like a bunch of misfitting words plucked from the sky. But that’s the whole point. Throw in some psychedelic artwork and the mysterious vibe is complete.

I’ve a lotta love for ‘There’s A Lotta Love’ as the sound of electric guitar stomps into overdrive for the chorus, offering a beautiful contrast with the largely unplugged acoustic intro. A tickle of the bass and its repetitive riff completes the sound.

Paul is lent a hand, and a voice on ‘Cry A Little’ by Iain Hornal of ‘10cc and Jeff Lynns ELO’. A poignant, piano lead tune featuring harmonies and varying tempos which can only be described as Beatles-esque. Impeccable taste.

At the heart of the album, is unquestionably Paul’s vocal. However, it makes way for a saxophone, a trumpet and a trombone as ‘Gill Gill Orange Peel’ draws the album to a close. A short, sweet instrumental and another great title to go with.

In a similar vein to its predecessor, ‘Gasoline Rainbow Mile’ is predominantly a positive, uplifting listen, touching on the more sombre only in parts. A talented musician in the studio, post lockdown, enjoying himself. All without a face mask in sight. Who’d have thought?

Gasoline Rainbow Mile Track listing:

Let Your River Take You Anywhere
Gasoline Rainbow Mile
Second Hand
That’s what I Like About You
There’s A Lotta Love
My Mona Lisa
Don’t You Ever Come Back Again
Cry A Little
Clever Girl/Gill Gill Orange peel