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Former Wedding Present David Gedge formed
Cinerama with Sally Morrell to play orchestral pop, but
Va Va Voom (Cooking Vinyl, 1998) betrays mainly a passion for
the early 1960s, the Byrds (the mellow harmonizing and jingle-jangling guitar in
Maniac), Donovan (the tender and melancholy Hate), the American
teen idols. His whispered vocals suit him well when he sticks to this fare.
Gedge's misguided program is instead tragically illustrated by
the lush arrangements of Kerry Kerry (strings as in
Burt Bacharach's worst nightmare and a melody that was meant for Petula Clark)
and the emphatic delivery of Hard Fast And Beautiful (cascading strings,
operatic refrain and even a late-night Billy Joel piano figure).
His paranoia culminates in the orchestral paroxysm of Dance Girl Dance.
As the elegant (and humbler) Barefoot In The Park proves,
Gedge is a master of the melodic hook, but the orchestra detracts instead
of enhancing, and, ultimately, it is the guitar that steals the show.
Following singles include:
Pacific (Elefant, 1999),
Manhattan (Scopitones, 2000),
Wow (Scopitones, 2000) and will be collected on
This Is Cinerama (Spinart, 2000).
Disco Volante (Manifesto, 2000)
contains more of this third-rate pop tunes that are both derivative and
uninspired (146 Degrees, Heels).
Health and Efficiency is the stand-out (i.e., catchiest) number on
Torino (Manifesto, 2002), which also include stale repetitions of
Gedge's abused pop format such as
And When She Was Bad and Two Girls.