IMPACT DATE: 30th September
LABEL: End of the Trail Records
Clear‘s Sunlight is unexpectedly fresh, yet channelling classic West Coast pop; a new slice of classic songwriting, harking back to a golden age of perfectly-crafted pop songs.
BBC DJs Dermot O’Leary, Gary Crowley, Tom Robinson, Janice Long and renowned tastemaker Simon Raymonde rushed to play – and heap praise on – their quintessentially pristine tunes. Gary went as far as naming Sunlight one of his “favourite songs of the summer.”
Clear have been carefully honing their craft, absorbing the golden-hued hits from the late 60s and early 70s – and trying to figure out what made them sound so timeless.
Thus, Paul Simon, Neil Diamond, James Taylor, Jackson Browne and that classic west-coast feel was temporarily relocated to the grittier locale of Sheffield when Clear penned Sunlight.
It was a song that catapulted them into the hearts of radio tastemakers, who all rushed to get the song on the air; wowed by the warm, dreamy, seemingly long-lost sounds. Listeners could be forgiven for thinking, “haven’t I heard this song before?”
Clear are hugely talented bunch – and when they sent Colin Elliot (producer of fellow Sheffield star Richard Hawley) their songs, he immediately understood their potential.
After Colin finished collaborating with Kylie Minogue at Abbey Road studios, he invited them into his own studio to capture Clear‘s warm, glossy sound. A short, fruitful session followed – and then Sunlight gloriously rose.
Gary Crowley: “Sumptuous pop music. One of my favourite songs of the summer.”
Janice Long‘s “Janice Loves” Radio 2 feature: “I think this is absolutely gorgeous”
Tom Robinson: “Sunlight is a piece of classic pop songwriting – in that it could have appealed to audiences anytime in the last 40 years – yet there’s enough 21st Century sensibility in the writing, recording and performance for Sunlight to sound fresh-wrought rather than some kind of retread.”
Simon Raymonde: “Sunlight is like a happy-go-lucky version of Radiohead’s ‘Let Down‘… which is one of my all-time favourite songs.”
Chris Damms, Clear: “We were contacted by Colin Eliot, who is Richard Hawley’s producer and co-owner of Yellow Arch studios where Richard records all his albums. He had played with Andy, our drummer, and said he fancied doing a couple of tracks with us. The result was “Sunlight”. It had a definite west coast vibe; the sound of the late 60’s early 70’s writers. We didn’t want to copy them but just wanted to work out what exactly made those simple songs so timeless.”
Chris Damms – Piano, Guitars, vocals
Jools Buffey – Piano, vocals
Hugh Ruiz – Bass
Bryan Day – vocals, Guitars, Piano, Keyboards.
Andy Cook – Drums