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BIG BIG TRAIN - THE LIKES OF US (2024) (Inside Out/ Sony)

There is always a piquancy and warmth to Big Big Train’s music, and while not as uninhibited as some past musical adventures, “The Likes of Us” delivers. Ex- PFM frontman Alberto Bravin has now settled into the lead vocalist’s role, and the music varies from the rocking single ‘Oblivion’ to the 17½ minute epic ‘Beneath the Masts’, a visceral piece on the theme of the passing of time and mortality that is personal to Rickenbacker bassist Greg Spawton. ‘Love is the Light’ is on a similar theme, a must for those who like their prog to have a commercial bent without compromising the integrity of the music.

Recorded together in the studio, the vocal harmonies are another prominent feature of the music, with Bravin supported by drummer Nick D’Virgilio, guitarist and keyboard player Rikard Sjöblom, keysman Oskar Holldorff and violinist Clare Lindley all vocalists in their own right; as are 12-string guitar and brass sounds that have become an integral part of the Big Big Train sound. Also, Dave Foster is back again unleashing some guitar solos. Dig!


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