OCEAN COLOUR SCENE - Mosely Shoals

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UK only. " 4 1/2 stars. By the time Ocean Colour Scene released their debut album in 1992, they were already considered has-beens. The band had formed during the height of Madchester, but they never released their first album until the scene was already dead, which left them without a following. But between their debut and their second album, 1996's Moseley Shoals, a strange thing happened -- the band was taken under the wings of two of Britain's biggest pop stars, Paul Weller and Noel Gallagher. The band suddenly catapulted back into the spotlight because of its superstar connections, but the music actually deserved the attention. Ocean Colour Scene had spent the time between their two albums improving their sound. On Moseley Shoals, they are looser, funkier, and have a strong, organic R&B vibe that was inherited from the Small Faces and Weller's solo recordings. They sprinkle Beatlesque and Stonesyflourishes throughout the album, as well as the odd prog rock flair, adding an even more eclectic flavor to their traditionalist pop/rock. Ocean Colour Scene are still developing their songwriting skills -- the sound is more impressive than the songs throughout Moseley Shoals -- but their second album is an unexpectedly enjoyable record." - AMG