Daniel Wylie – The High Cost Of Happiness

Second (or third if you count Postcards, last year’s collection of songs the Danny felt “didn’t fit in with the themes and moods of either of his records” … reviewed elsewhere on these pages) solo album by an ex-Cosmic Rough Rider-in-chief, still finds him chasing the West Coast sun, this time around coming up with what might as well be the best of soundtracks to it.

Throughout most of the album, it’s with the significant Neil Young-ish fragility and Stills-less Buffalo Springfield delivery (That Was The Day, Tell Them The Truth, Broadcast News, Can You Feel The Love…), that he keeps reminding us why Enjoy The Melodic Sunshine is still the best Cosmic Rough Riders album, and you’ll also soon come to realise that this is actually the best “cosmic rough ride” that you’re likely to have.

It’s actually when he adds an extra hook or two that he shines the most, such as with the jazzy flavoured The Sound Of Children, the Bacharachian Define Love, and there’s also Move In With Me with a kind of a softish blue eyed soul vibe to it.

And the slightlydelic harmony-pop sound of Where The Time Goes, is worthy of the sun shiniest vocal arrangements by the likes of The Association or Millennium, and while we’re at it, Rainbow City might’ve pass for a long lost Yellow Balloon track.

I’m not sure about the actual meaning of the album title, but Daniel’s one of those who DID pay quite a price for happiness, having been forced into abandoning the rights for the Cosmics’ name and early output, but considering his latest release, he still has a lot to offer and he seems quite happy about it.

[Released by Neon Tetra 2006]

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