Review: The Wave by Tom Chaplin

The Wave by Tom ChaplinIt’s taken Tom Chaplin three years to get out a solo album – three years since Keane went on hiatus and its members pursued solo projects, Tom’s solo album being on top of mind. Not that anybody was waiting for it. I don’t mean to be mean – I am a Keane fan, after all. You don’t really expect something grand on The Wave. You know you have Tom’s soaring, choir boy-like voice, still potent after all these years, albeit with a hint of grit that you get after the rumble tumble of the touring life (and growing older). He still does the job: there are moments when the switched is flicked and you just feel good about what you’re hearing. It just takes a bit of getting used to, I guess. There are different tricks at work – more straightforward tricks, more overly manipulative ones; I found myself yearning for the tinkle of Tim Rice-Oxley’s piano. It does the job, down to the broad-appeal statements, but I couldn’t help but feel like I’m listening to a cover band with the actual vocalist singing. I ended up wanting to hear an actual Keane album… which I did next. [NB]3/5