The long-awaited introduction of Butler
to the music world as a singer/songwriter is at once slightly tentative and quite promising. The title track is one of the more self-consciously grandiose things out there, but its big advantage is that it builds rather than overwhelms. Beginning with a gentle acoustic guitar and background whooshing, Butler
then adds a quick piano part just before his voice, light but not weak, takes its initial bow. Drums, electric guitar, keyboards, and Denise Johnson
's backing vocals all get introduced step by step, holding back a bit then coming together in one last big climax and quiet coda. Personal Butler
hero Edwyn Collins
takes a turn on backing vocals himself for "Hotel Splendide," which has a great keyboard line and a crisp '60s pop-with-fuzz tinge. Butler
's singing is noticeably more full-bodied here, while his guitar pyrotechnics at the end are quite good. "The Sea" wraps up the EP on a lovely note, with Butler
's piano and romantic singing accompanied by strings and French horn.