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Making Music, 1995

Frazier Chorus in concert

Sean McManus reviews Frazier Chorus's 1995 concert at the Union Chapel, London in this article which first appeared in Making Music magazine

Not exactly tour monsters, Frazier Chorus. It's been four years since the last concert and this was a low-key launch for the new encarnation. Band members have been dropping out over the years, leaving singer and songwriter Tim Freeman to rebuild the band from friends and family. It's an intimate concert, with the band increasingly relaxing as the show progresses.

Tim Freeman dancing

Frazier Chorus mainman Tim Freeman dancing

With no more woodwind nor strings, the new Chorus plays sparsely produced pop songs, filling the sound out with keyboards and kazoos. The songs from the new mini-album have less sophisticated arrangements than the first two albums, but carry the sort of catchy melody that haunts you all the way home. It's lazy summer fodder for the most part, carried by Freeman's soulful voice that makes even the most miserable lyric sound soothingly cheerful.

The show cuts straight to the heart of older songs, sacrificing note perfect reconstructions in favour of a stripped down presentation, as naked as guitar and vocals in some cases. Cloud 8 steals the show by being funked up and jammed out. It's virtually a re-write, with the new Chorus doing a cover version of the old. Like the rest of the material, it works because it has a strong melody at its core. A credible live pop band is a rarity today, so it's a shame that the band will probably continue to be overlooked.