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Good Things

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Album Review

The passing of Epic Soundtracks in November of 1997 left a real void in the hearts of his fans, and the release of Good Things is an occasion of both immense joy and real sadness. Joy for how wonderful the songs are and sadness because they are the last we will ever hear. Thanks to his brother's diligent and loving efforts, Good Things is an unexpected gift full of warmth and soul. The album is made up of demos Epic and Kevin Junior (of the Chamber Strings) recorded on a four-track recorder in Epic's bedroom in November of 1996. Destined for the fourth album he never recorded, the songs are intimate and unassuming, the most upbeat (for the most part and keeping in mind that most of his tunes are about as bleak as can be), melodic, and powerful of his career. Ballads were Epic's strong suit and there are many here that rate among his finest, like "I Do Declare," "Sooner or Later," the near gospel "Roll the Stone," and "The House on the Hill." The album also delivers some pleasant surprises like the strum-along stomper "You Better Run," the lilting "Maybe You're Right," and the acoustic guitar ballad "Cry a Tear," which sounds like a classic Nikki Sudden track. Due to the nature of the recordings, the sound of the album is mostly just piano, guitar, and Epic's voice with the occasional vocal harmonies from Junior, who proves to be a very supportive musical presence. You don't really miss the extra level of sheen that recording in a real studio would have given the songs; instead you can treasure the intimacy and looseness involved. And you can thank Nikki Sudden for rescuing this album. It is a heartbreakingly important addition to the legacy of a major talent who left way too soon as well as a damn good record.


Born: 23 March 1959 in Croydon, Surrey, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s

Perhaps best known as a co-founder of British post-punkers Swell Maps, Epic Soundtracks reinvented himself as an eccentric, critically acclaimed piano balladeer during the '90s. Soundtracks -- who trademarked his stage name, forcing Epic Records' soundtrack division to change its spelling to "Soundtrax" -- was born Kevin Paul Godfrey in Croydon, England, on March 23, 1959 (although several sources list Paul Godley). In 1972, he and his older brother Nicholas -- later Nikki Sudden -- started playing...
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