For many artists, the professional recording of an album can result in the loss of early spark, energy and magic captured in original demos and live recordings. The vulnerability of exposed personality can become distant and misrepresented when polished by a swanky studio full of multiple knobs and buttons, but here on Tender Is The Night by Golden Glow there are no such sound refining issues.

Tender is the Night is an eleven song album of demos. All of the distortion, the fuzziness, the choppy experimental layers and personal lyrics of joy and sorrow are captured here in their original form.

The concept is brave and the raw sound is heart on your sleeve stuff and Pierre Hall’s transparent influences can be easily identified. Indeed I feel almost lazy to state the obvious tones of New Order and Joy Division repeating through this record, but an alternative comparison would be futile.

‘Adore Me’ is a strong opener and launches the album into a sound reminiscing Manchester’s past that continues on much the same course for the next ten songs. Other standout moments include the three songs that close the album, the poppy ‘Streetlighter’, Ian Curtis-esque ‘Retreat’ and upbeat ‘Start Again’, with ‘Retreat’ being my album highlight.

The weaker songs on the album such as ‘All Time’ demonstrate where that sparkling shiny professional studio may have leant to a more affable sound; in places vocals are flat, too distorted and ranges aren’t met. ‘On My Own’ is crying out to be propelled to another level of heightened guitars but such possibilities are not reached – would such variation have been achieved if pushed in a studio? The downfalls of this album could have been ironed out with the aid of a full studio, but that gets away from the point of this album and its sincere charm.

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