Steve Mason - Boys Outside
Whilst it’s great to go on holiday it’s always nice to come home. Returning to somewhere familiar where you can have egg and chips on your lap whilst watching Deal or No Deal. Since the Beta Band split Steve Mason has been on a package tour with King Biscuit Time and more recently Black Affair. Both projects had a welcome familiarity and produced some exceptional material. But Boys Outside is his first album under his own moniker and feels like a long awaited return to where it all started. His gift to take simple beats and rhythms and layer them upon one-another as components to a complex machine is expertly demonstrated here - echoing back the early days of the Beta Band. As each musical cog and pulley slides into place the conveyer belt starts to dispense package after package of sonic joy, his gentle voice blending flawlessly into the mix creating a thing of beauty topped off with a dignified dollop of melancholy. The triad of songs that close the record are some of his finest work, entwining emotion with harmony to splendid effect. Boys Outside captures a talented songwriter operating at the peak of his abilities and shouldn’t be missed.