Soley Mourning – The Rocket Pool (Saltdog Records)

Genre: Melodic Hard Rock

With 2011’s superlative Zaire setting the bar impossibly high where these wildly talented West Midlanders are concerned, The Rocket Pool finally releases a powder keg of pressure of the band’s own making.

A weight off their shoulders and a weighty album in its own right, this 10-track statement of intent maintains a glorious progression from bluesy debut Mambo County thru Zaire‘s heady mix of melodic hard rock to a point where serious critical acclaim is, surely, Soley Mourning’s for the taking.

Perhaps it’s that peculiar name or maybe it’s the below-par artwork that continues to haunt the quintet but something has hitherto prevented Mat Partridge and his buddies from making the commercial breakthrough their classy songwriting merits. The music, you see, is peerless.

The effortless funk rock that lies of the heart of standout track Turn Yourself Around evokes memories of the Dan Reed Network at their very best and yet Soley Mourning are, on the whole, a far heavier prospect. There’s a politicised undercurrent running through The Rocket Pool: Living Colour could have recorded The Unmaking Of A Rational Mind and been immensely proud of their efforts.

Think you’ve heard everything British rock has to offer? Think again. Simon Rushworth

RUSHONROCK RATED: 9/10 Rocket Fuelled