Boomkat Product Review:
I find it hard to be objective about Robin Guthrie, a man who shaped the sound of a generation with his then lady friend Elizabeth Fraser as The Cocteau Twins, the man who was responsible for forging the soundtrack to so many lonely train-rides in my youth. Listening to his solo material now brings back all the right kind of memories, but this is maybe because he has found it difficult to move on from the sound he took so much pleasure in piecing together. Those endless seas of reverb, chords which defy all known melancholic logic and drums basking in caverns of echo - it's all still present and correct, in fact all that's missing from 'Continental' is Fraser's beautiful vocals. This will all be quite familiar to fans of Guthrie's solo debut 'Imperial' (released on Bella Union in 2003) and 'Continental' takes a very similar route, the only difference being that Guthrie seems much more content to 'rock out' than he did on 'Imperial'. Although the long stretches of romantic ambience are still here in full force, every so often a distorted guitar will rear it's ugly head and brash loud drums will jump up out of nowhere and before you know it you're into stadium rock territory. This won't be a big surprise to anyone familiar with the later work of the Cocteau Twins, and indeed it doesn't sound totally out of place here, but Guthrie's greatest triumphs come when he takes it easy, when he lets the sounds wash over him and in turn wash over us. Here is a man who has an incredibly unmatched talent for songwriting - and it is a pleasure to hear him work, wherever he chooses to take us.