NIK KERSHAW; "15 Minutes" (Pyramid/Rhino). 3 stars
Singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Nik Kershaw's last charting hit was back in 1984, "Wouldn't It Be Good."He's back. And he's full of life.
The new album is "15 Minutes," which pretty much caps his run of fame back in the up-beat '80s. And staying true to the '80s feel, "15 Minutes" is ripe with anthemic bounces.
"Somebody Loves You" opens the album with its catchy refrain. The lyrics capture a concert setting in a singer's point of view. And the touching "Have a Nice Life," written for one of his three sons, echoes a parent's concern when letting go.
Kershaw's lyrical imagery shines through with such songs as "Shine On" -- "I took a hundred and ten pictures of you/Put them all around me and wondered what to do/Like a temple in memory/A shine in your name/To days I don't remember/To nights I can't reclaim..."
Other songs include the relationship analysis "Billy," the restless yearning of "Find Me an Angel" and "Fiction," among others.
There's even a hidden acoustic track of "Wouldn't It Be Good."
Kershaw's release is strong, fun and thought provoking. Too bad a lot of young music listeners are into the angst. Kershaw's music can penetrate without plowing over. And sometimes subtlety and smarts can be more moving than blaring angry riffs.