philmanley

The term ‘solo instrumental album’ strikes dreaded fear into music critics, label managers and all but the most dedicated of fans. They are often employed as a platform to create self-indulgent pieces by ego-laden people with little to say. ‘Life Coach’, crafted by a founding member of legendary DC trio Trans Am and now in-demand studio engineer Phil Manley, does not fall completely foul of all the usual road-tested demons and has resulted in a reliably steady album that predictably passes with little turbulence. But whether sounding like a motorik-hugging Kraftwerk on opener ‘FT2 Theme’ or swerving to an atmospherically acoustic piece with flashes of Indian inspired overtones on ‘Make Good Choices’, this album maintains a lacklustre spirit throughout. There are many good reasons why these kinds of albums tend to disappear without a trace.

By Nathan Westley

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