40 Ft. RINGO (Trixter) – Funny Thing [reissue +7] (2019)
Formed by Steve Brown & PJ Farley of Trixter while the band was on hiatus, 40 FT. RINGO released their debut album via a Swedish record label. Now it has been reissued with bonus tracks as “Funny Thing [reissue +7]”.
Despite both musicians hair metal pedigree, 40 FT. RINGO style is more straight, catchy and energetic, their sound is playful melodic rock and roll, with lots of attitude and a Cheap Trick power pop punch.
Apart from lead guitar, Steve Brown handles the lead vocals here, and as soon as you hear his voice you’ll know why Trixter had such great harmonies. The guy can sing.
Perhaps ‘Anyway’, the chosen as first single, reflects the album quite well because the overall feeling is energy. Besides using the word “yeah,” throughout the chorus, the words really carry the song along. “We’re going to that place where lost souls get together, the heroes, freaks & geeks & vampires all will be there.” It’s catchy, funny, and the chorus offers the line, “Yeah, how I love you when you’re naked.” Actually, just the first vocal lines of the song pull you in; it’s downhill from there.
‘Wired’ showcases a more throaty than smooth vocal line, but the voice is still strong. It is almost ridiculous how well written the chorus is here.
‘Big Fat Smile’ has a deep bass line from PJ Farley that drives the song. Their sing-along “na na na na na na” after the guitar solo is addictive as well.
There’s some Bon Jovi tinge on the song ‘Be My Fix’. This is one of the few songs where they lean towards sadness instead of humor. And they do it well. This is just another well-constructed tune.
You’ll have to search for a reason not to like this album.
Songs like ‘Anti-Zero,’ ‘Inside Your Head’ (a bit of Harem Scarem here), ‘Fanatic,’ ‘A Freak Like You,’ and ‘Miss You Blue,’ are all really catchy rock songs. You’ll remember them after hearing them once or twice, and you’ll be singing along.
Then midtempo ballad ‘Origami Mommy’ shows what a great variation Steve Brown and the guys have. This song tells a tale of a broken home, about a mother that is folded up inside so many times she is just a crumpled version of her true self.
Another favorite of mine is ‘Tough’, a poignant power ballad with acoustics that explains, “I’m as tough as nails, but not as tough as you.” The acoustic guitar is simple, the lyrics are spare, and the vocals are subdued. This could easily have been a radio hit.
The bonus tracks are mostly from an EP 40 FT. RINGO released the same year, with ‘Shakedown’ bringing to mind again Harem Scarem / Rubber, and ‘Sober’ turning things pretty hard rock.
40 FT. RINGO just play good, catchy rock and roll. They remind you of a lot of other bands, but they own their own sound. It’s a fun, entertaining, with short songs in the 3-minute mark.
Addictive stuff. Highly Recommended
01 – Inside Your Head
02 – Anyway
03 – Wired
04 – Big Fat Smile
05 – Origami Mommy
06 – Book of Virtues
07 – Be My Fix
08 – A Freak Like You
09 – Unbroken
10 – Miss You Blue
11 – Anti-Zero
12 – Fanatic
13 – Tough
14 – Inside Your Head (Atomic Pop Remix)
15 – Shakedown
16 – Jerkoff
17 – Sober
18 – Hopeless
19 – New Mistake
20 – Book of Virtues (Live ’04)
Steve Brown (Trixter) – Vocals, Guitar
PJ Farley (Trixter) – Bass, Backing Vocals
Maz – Guitars
Brian Gabriel – Drums
BUY IT !