McFLY – Power To Play (2023)

McFLY - Power To Play (2023) - full

English band McFLY have been around for almost 2 decades delivering mostly pop / synth-based music, however they love everything ’80s related, including ’80s rock. As a hint, the band took their name from the Back To The Future character Marty McFly.
Now take a look at the cover art of their new album “Power To Play” – yeah, pure ’80s – and listen some of the songs – all are guitar driven rockers, still with pop sensibility & melody, but with rocking delivery and sound. On their lead single / video ‘Where Did All the Guitars Go?’ guitarist Danny Jones uses a Eddie Van Halen striped guitar – his playing is far from Eddie, but it shows influences.
“At the start of the process, we all got together and said what they wanted this new album to be. We all had this one thing in common, and it was guitars,” the group explains. “We love being on tour and playing live, and we hate this weird pressure where you don’t get played on the radio if you have guitars in your songs.”

“That was always in the back of our heads, so we decided to forget all about it and that same day (guitarist) Tom Fletcher wrote Where Did All The Guitars Go? on the way home. On every album, there’s a song which becomes a foundation, a lightbulb moment, and this was it.”

Opening the collection, it’s an ode to the pop-rock days of the early-noughties and its impact on teens like McFly, who pose: ‘Who’s gonna play for the kids with long hair when nobody cares? / How will they cope with the pain?’
Follow-up Land of the Bees is similarly self-referential, while I’m Fine is bursting with ironic angst and God of Rock & Roll feeds into the themes of the LP for a classic stadium filler.

Bringing together inspirations from across the decades, the electronic verses on Forever’s Not Enough lean into a lost era of late-Eighties rock and roll when synths began to infiltrate the genre, while Route 55 references the sounds of the Seventies with a standout singalong chorus.
On closing track Shine On, they once again reach out with a reassuring mantra for standing proud and living life boldly and authentically – a sentiment reflected across an album that’s unashamedly McFly.

Of their mission this time around, the band says: “Guitars, honesty, energy, all these personality traits are what give us the band’s identity. We want to reach that kid with long hair, get them excited about music and make them want to pick up a guitar and jump on their bed. That’s what this record is about.”
This is cool, simple rock n’pop, but enjoyable, and as McFly reach a wide audience, indeed it may help some kids to discover rock n’ roll, electric guitar rock n’ roll
Highly Recommended


01 – Where Did All the Guitars Go?
02 – Land of the Bees
03 – Forever’s Not Enough
04 – God of Rock & Roll
05 – I’m Fine
06 – Taking Back Tonight
07 – Honey I’m Home
08 – Route 55
09 – Crash
10 – Make It Out Alive
11 – Shine On

Tom Fletcher – vocals, guitars
Danny Jones – vocals, guitars
Harry Judd – drums
Dougie Poynter – bass



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