SIMON Bell's first release since 'Givin' It Plenty', the theme from No.1 Of The Secret Service in 1976 is entitled 'About Time', I wonder why it took so long.
This EP showcases the full range of his considerable vocal talent, from the deep, sorrowful and soul vocals to the high, punchy notes meaning About Time is a rollercoaster of human emotion.
The self-penned lyrics are emotive and strong and easily to pick up as Bell is a master of his craft and provides clear diction throughout.
About Time begins with 'Next To Me' a tale of love and loss, full of anger but also recrimination and loss, beautifully woven together with words and a fine sorrowful sound.
Play (If Life's a Game) is in a similar soulful vein and creates a very relaxed atmosphere which allows you as a music lover to take in the deep vocals.
Bell, together with producer Justin Whittingham, has put together a masterclass in EP recording, for as soon as you've relaxed into your chilled out zone, up comes Partner in Crime.
Within the first few chords, the atmosphere of the EP changes with a foot tapping, guitar heavy bouncy tune which fans of the Eagles might appreciate as the sound is quite similar.
For me Partner in Crime is the most addictive track on the EP, with just a few listens I was humming the tune when I finished the car journey.
To close a very fine EP, Bell wishes us a Happy New Year and returns to the sorrow and soulful sound which serves him well.
The track is very poignant and brings together nicely the mood around the change of year, one of celebration yes but also reflection and occasionally emotion.
Music can make you happy and make you sad, but it can also make you reflect and think.
About Time does that, based on this effort I reckon it's About Time we heard an album!
* About Time is available for download from iTunes, Amazon and all other music download sites.