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Candy Opera – Photo Credit: Steve Hines
With the UK so ripe with indie rock material these days, it is no surprise that Liverpool is once again in focus. Today we present the latest from jangle-pop stalwarts Candy Opera, who emerged during Liverpool’s 1980s musical golden age and whose new album ‘The Patron Saint of Heartache’ constitutes their first new material in nearly three decades.
Ahead of that, they present ‘These Days Are Ours’, a rally cry of hope for the current times and the first single from this long-play, which is due for release in mid-November via European / UK label A Turntable Friend Records. The video was created / produced by James Davies and Paul Malone.
This is very welcome news as a highly underrated band who is now back with a force. While their previous output is stellar (significant enough to warrant two 2018 retrospective compilations – ’45 Revolutions Per Minute’ and ‘Rarities’), this new single is even more commanding of attention. This is absolutely stunning, the band reaching higher than ever before. This should certainly appeal to fans of peers Aztec Camera, Prefab Sprout, The Dream Academy, Wolfhounds, The Pale Fountains, The Railway Children, fans of more recent bands as Phoenix, The Mary Onettes and The Radio Dept.
Mixed by Grammy award-winning producer Guy Massey and featuring backing vocals by Paul Simpson of The Wild Swans, the track was recorded at Elevator Studios in Liverpool. With all the hallmarks of an enduring pop anthem, this impeccably produced, adrenaline-fueled song captures the essence of Candy Opera’s infectious energy and celebrates life with a genuine wonder-lust, while delivering the excitement of their live performances.
Their new album ‘The Patron Saint of Heartache’ picks up where the band left off, with fourteen songs fresh out the box, ready for discovery of a sound as timeless as anything else Candy Opera ever put out.
Candy Opera were formed in Liverpool in 1982 and went through various incarnations before calling it a day in 1992. By 1985, the band had played alongside the likes of The Pogues, The Go-Betweens and The Redskins, as well as appearing on Granada TV. Reviews in NME, Sounds and Jamming magazine followed.
The band’s current line-up is drawn from all eras of the band’s existence and features Brian Chin Smithers (guitar, vocals), Alan Currie (drums), Frank Mahon (bass), Paul Malone (vocals, guitar), Ken Moss (guitar), and Gary O’Donnell (keyboards, vocals, percussion).
This new LP also features a swathe of friends and contemporaries, including Paul Simpson (The Wild Swans) and Phil Jones (Afraid of Mice). The result is an exquisite piece of pop craftsmanship that brings their songs into the light. This is a labor of love born of experience, but retaining the sense of wonder that brought the band together in the first place.
‘The Patron Saint of Heartache’ LP will be released on November 13 on limited-run green vinyl or limited-run black vinyl, CD with booklet, and digital download. It can be pre-ordered directly from the band via Bandcamp
Also check out some endearing tracks from the band’s archives, as recorded live at Parr Street Studios in the pre-Covid era