Most people mention Prince when they hear him, but every time we encounter Twin Shadow, we can’t help but think that, in the nicest possible way, we’ve got a new Phil Collins on our hands. It’s all there in the first song of George Lewis Jr’s major-label debut, Eclipse; on Flatliners, there’s that trademark raspy vocal, a huge power-rock chorus, and thumping drum backdrop that has become something of an MO for the New Yorker.
Of course, there’s huge merit in that as well: When The Lights Turn Out and To The Top are full of throwback goodness, managing that tight balance of fresh and familiar. The problem lies in it becoming a bit repetitive over the course of a full album (not to mention content that never strays above lines like “jealousy and ecstasy slowly taking over me). By the time the title track comes along, the beats and peaks of each song become predictable, and if the comparisons with Prince were to be believed, Lewis would have made more of a Lily Elise cameo than what we get from Alone.
Of course, Twin Shadow wouldn’t be here if he didn’t have his moments, and that Warner cash can start feeling justified on tracks like Turn Me Up. The rest of it? All a bit sanitised unfortunately, with little feeling imparted despite the overwrought delivery. Eclipse certainly feels like the right name for something with as little edge as this.