BRAINSTORY is a Californian trio – brothers Kevin and Tony Martin (on guitar/vocals and bass, respectfully) and Eric Hagstrom (drums). Since the back end of last year we’ve enjoyed a series of quirky, catchy singles from ‘em. Every time we reviewed a single we’ve said that what the band peddle isn’t classic soul – but  things like ‘Nobody But You’, ‘Gift Of Life’, ‘Listen’, ‘Too Yung’ (their spelling, by the way), ‘Peach Optimo’ and ‘Hanging On’ delivered (amongst other flavours) a charming spin on blue-eyed soul. What impressed was the boys’ naïve musical enthusiasm and how they melded an indie vibe, West Coast harmonics and guitar twang with, as we said, a blue-eyed soul flavour. There was nothing not to like!

If you share that sentiment, you’ll be pleased to know   that Brainstory have just launched a full album – ‘Sounds Good’ (the follow up to their 2019 ‘Buck’ set). The six singles are all included  which leaves 6 new songs and things like ‘NyNy’, ‘I Will Be’ , ‘Xfaded’ , ‘Sweet and Lovely’ and ‘Stay’ offer a sound mixed from the same ingredients as those singles. Those last two are particularly impressive. ‘Sweet And Lovely’ is a wonderful late era Beatles/Beach Boys  mash up ballad while ‘Stay’ is a sweet and soulful ballad with a hint of doo-wop. That sort of leaves the closing track, ‘Rialto Winds’ – this is a cinematic instrumental and brings an intriguing album to an unusual  ending.

BRAINSTORY; ‘Sounds Good’ is out Friday 19th April across all formats on Big Crown Records and the band visit the UK next month  for a mini tour supporting Lady Wray. Here’s the dates:

May 23 – Belgrave Music Hall – Leeds w/ Lady Wray

May 24 – Lost Horizon – Bristol w/ Lady Wray

May 26 – Cross The Tracks Festival – Brockwell Park w/ Lady Wray

May 27 – Jazz Cafe – London w/ Lady Wray

May 28 – The Blues Kitchen – Manchester w/ Lady Wray & Craig Charles

May 29 – St. Luke’s – Glasgow w/ Lady Wray