Thunderclap Newman -
Hollywood Dream

(CD (1970/2009; 1:08:43; Esoteric Recordings ECLEC 2149)

The tracks:
  1- Something In The Air
  2- Hollywood #1
  3- The Reason
  4- Open The Door, Homer
  5- Look Around
  6- Accidents
  7- Wild Country
  8- When I Think
  9- The Old Cornmill
10- Donít Know
11- Hollywood Dream
12- Hollywood #2
13- Something In The Air
14- Wilhemina
15- Accidents
16- I See It All
17- The Reason
18- Stormy Petrel

Thunderclap Newman Website        samples        Esoteric Records

Thunderclap Newman is one of those names that sound vaguely familiar but you cannot recall where or when you heard it. It could be you heard of this quintessential English band because of their 1969 monster hit Something In The Air that captured the mood of those days quite nicely. At least, that is what the band info says because to me-forty years on-this music sounds just plain outdated. Likened to other very English bands The Kinks or The Small Faces,† Hollywood Dream has not weathered the storm of ages very well. It probably didnít even do well in the old days as Hollywood Dream is the only album from this trio. Maybe because the three men were assembled by The Whoís Pete Townshend to interpret and perform the songs of John Speedy Keene, which might have been a bit too contrived. It is not that all songs are uninteresting-some of them are quite nice. But the songs of Thunderclap Newman were sung by Speedy himself who sounds spot-on like K.C., yes that guy from the Sunshine Band, and that doesnít really help the enjoyment. Neither does the rather poor musicianship which is worst heard in the shaky piano playing. It is nice of Esoteric Records to try to make us happy by unearthing old gems, but unfortunately Hollywood Dream is not one of them, despite the six bonus tracks on this re-release.

*- Andrť de Waal (edited by Robert James Pashman)

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