Album Review: Show of Hands – Battlefield Dance Floor

Show of Hands latest album, Battlefield Dance Floor, will be released at the end of this month, ahead of their Now We Are Four tour later this year. How anyone can release 18 studio albums and still sound as fresh and original as this masterpiece, co-produced by Mark Tucker and Steve Knightley, is beyond me. Knightley’s song writing ability truly does go from strength to strength, and this latest album is no exception.

Battlefield Dance Floor is the first album release in 3 years, since The Long Way Home in 2016, and to say it is worth the wait would be an understatement to say the least. It is the first release for Show of Hands with Proper Records, and the first album release featuring their new percussionist Cormac Byrne.

The album title song, Battlefield Dance Floor, was a true highlight on the album for me, with lyrics to really create a scene and open your heart. Knightley has a way of making you visualise what he is singing about, making everything that little bit more relatable and attractive.

The driving impact of Byrne’s percussion on the track positively impacts this album, changing the vibe of this record from any other. The music has a more mainstream feel to it, suggesting this may well be a breakthrough for the already incredibly successful musicians.

Miranda Sykes has returned after her sabbatical, and what a wonderful addition she is to this latest album. Sykes takes lead vocal on both Kirsty Merryn’s ‘Forfarshire’, and ‘Make The Right Noises’, positively adding to the variety of the album. The vocal harmony lines in ‘Forfarshire’ are sure to make you take notice for all the right reasons.

And yet we are still to mention the incredible, multi-instrumentalist and genius that is Phil Beer. Leonard Cohen’s track, ‘First We Take Manhattan’ is covered on the album and is driven by Beer’s fiddle, making it very Show of Hands-esque. It’s addictive to listen to.

Despite there being 13 tracks on this album, 8 of which are brand new for our consumption, the album still leaves you wanting more. So pre-order your album copy, and I’d recommend getting your gig tickets too, before Show Of Hands take their career to the next level.

Get your copy here

Now We Are Four Tour

Wed, Oct 30 – The Beehive, Honiton
Thu, Oct 31 – Royal Hall, Harrogate
Fri, Nov 1 – Cast, Doncaster
Sat, Nov 2 – Gala Theatre & Cinema, Durham
Thu, Nov 7 – Brangwyn Hall, Swansea
Fri, Nov 8 – The Forum, Bath
Sat, Nov 9 – Westlands Yeovil, Yeovil
Wed, Nov 13 – Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury
Thu, Nov 14 – Epic Studios, Norwich
Fri, Nov 15 – Dorking Halls, Dorking
Sat, Nov 16 – City Hall Salisbury, Salisbury
Wed, Nov 20 – New Theatre Royal, Portsmouth
Thu, Nov 21 – The Alban Arena, St Albans
Fri, Nov 22 – Union Chapel, London
Sat, Nov 23 – De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill On Sea
Wed, Nov 27 – Birmingham Town Hall, Birmingham
Thu, Nov 28 – Cheltenham Town Hall, Cheltenham
Fri, Nov 29 – The Engine Shed, Lincoln
Sat, Nov 30 – Leicester Haymarket Theatre, Leicester
Fri, Dec 6 – Exmouth Pavilion, Exmouth
Sat, Dec 7 – Exmouth Pavilion, Exmouth

Ticket links and more here: https://showofhands.co.uk

Review by Emma Baldwin

 

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