A new band to me and, I would suggest, to many LT readers. The publicity material says that Rainbow Chasers are a group of young, soon to be famous musicians. This is true about three of the four members, but when the other member is none other than a certain Mr. Ashley Hutchings, this could be seen to be stretching the truth a bit! At a time when he has just received the ultimate accolade – an excellent Free Reed compilation- no one would have complained if Ashley had taken time to promote that. But no! Here he shows us that, with Rainbow Chasers, he has his mind set firmly on the future.
But this is much more than another Ashley Hutching’s project-in fact he seems to be more the catalyst which allows three extremely talented musicians to produce a mature CD and, maybe, reach a wider audience. What is encouraging is that they can all sing and are producing their own material, most of which is very contemporary in feel, whilst still being rooted very firmly in the tradition.
Ruth Angell provides some excellent fiddle, Jo Hamilton’s viola and keyboards give a rich depth to the sound, whilst Mark Hutchinson is responsible for some sympathetic guitar work-and Ashley’s trademark bass is there. And, of course they all sing. In some bands having four members taking lead vocals would be a problem as their identity would be lost, but here each complements the other, giving us a fresh, vibrant sound. The tight harmonies help here, I think, to give us something different. This is not just another Albion Band, this is about the celebration of new talent, about a band who has a clear idea of where it is going, and who know exactly what sound they want to produce.
You will, at this point, notice that I have made no mention of the individual tracks. No apologies for that as they all need to be listened to, although I do have my favourites, but it is the songwriting craftsmanship which comes through in all of them. A variety of traditional, and not so traditional subjects are covered, justice being done to each. The album is well produced and engineered, although I did find it difficult to hear the words on one track- but that could be my age. The cd is well packaged with excellent artwork, even if the writing is just a little bit small-now that is an age thing! Anyway these are minor things when the album is this good.
First reports say that they can produce the goods live so ‘Some Colours Fly’ by the Rainbow Chasers should do well.