Tim Ainslie And The Vibes – Pint Half Full Album Review – 8.5 out of 10

No-Bar-code-Pint-Half-Full-Front-Cover

Tim Ainslie and The Vibes, formerly ‘Ainslie’s Vibes’, are a powerful three-piece band from Suffolk, fronted by Tim and showcasing his original material and dynamic guitar playing.

Tim formed the band in 2009 and in 2010 they released their debut EP ‘The People Have Spoken’ followed by ‘Standing Ten Feet Tall’ in 2012. Recently, Tim has teamed up with Brendan O’Neill on drums and Rob Palmer on bass for his latest recording ‘Pint Half Full’.

  1. Pint Half Full
  2. If I Knew Then
  3. No Brainer
  4. Ain’t No Turning Back
  5. Good to Bad
  6. In Or Out
  7. No Regrets
  8. Long Time Coming
  9. Mr Evil
  10. Oyster Reach

Tim Ainslie – Vocals and Guitar    Brendan O’Neill – Drums   Rob Palmer – Bass

Overall the CD itself is presented in an excellent way. The CD cover is cleverly designed with a professional look about it.  One of the things Tim is especially good at, is crafting songs with clever, catchy lyrics. This happens alot through out the album.

The album kick starts with the title track ‘Pint Half Full’ which was also released as the album single. The song reflects positivity; ‘You don’t have to pay to smile’. The carefully written lyrics and catchy chorus bring this song to life.  The song lightens your mood with a distinctive bluesy riff a key feature of the song. There is definitely an element of humour in the lyrics; ‘Don’t be too hasty, to ask her to be your wife!’. I give this song a 7 out of ten.

The creative lyrics and jazz funk vibe of second track ‘If I knew then’ combine to make it my favourite track from the album, with the funky groove laid down by drummer Brendan O’Neill a prominent feature.  It is based around a holiday romance ‘Swimming in the bluest seas, corals and reefs like make believe’. Catchy riffs and brilliant guitar solos contribute to make this a jazz / funk monster of a song. Being the funkiest song on the album, I believe any funk enthusiast would love this song.                                                  I give this song a 9 out of ten.

The third song on the album ‘No Brainer’ is a romance song. It is the second single Tim released. The song is built around a trademark Tim Ainslie blues riffs which are among the catchiest and most effective on the album. This would be the perfect song to start a gig with as it would really get the party started. I give this song a 8 out of 10.

The fourth song on the album ‘Ain’t No Turning Back’ is a modern take on a 60’s pop -song. It is the third single Tim released. The song mixes a catchy pop-style chorus with a funky verse and is smooth, upbeat and soulful throughout. Tim’s different class vocals and guitar playing, really help to make this song work.  I give this song a 7.4 out of 10.

The fifth song on the album ‘Good To Bad’ starts subtly and slowly. The brushed drums and the calming guitar playing come together to create a slow 50’s style jazz/blues song. Being the slowest song on the album, it then breaks into song with a great chorus; ‘Some things are sent to test you, make you prove your word, you’ve got to keep rejuvenating even though it hurts’.  I give this song a 7 out of ten.

The sixth song on the album ‘In Or Out’ is a song that highlights the tale of Brexit; ‘Make their own rules or just dancing to their tune’. The disjointed start of the song reflects the confusion around how to handle Brexit. The upbeat track sees bassist Rob Palmer demonstrate his skills with a catchy blues riff prominent throughout. The song ends with another demonstration of Tim’s virtuoso guitar skills.
I give this song a 7.5 out of ten.

The seventh song on the album ‘No Regrets’ uses an impressive jazz-based strummed foundation over a high speed baseline.  The song then transforms into a catchy chorus; ‘All we can’t take, is what we given, away’. After the chorus, the song then turns to a well executed, almost party-like tune. That tune really adds to the song in a positive way.           I give this song a 7 out of ten.

The eighth song on the album ‘Long Time Coming’ is another one of my favourites; largely due to the catchy melody and excellent vocals. The song is rounded off with a funky guitar solo, accompanied by the excellent groove of  Brendan on drums and Rob on bass. One part which stands out to me is when Tim sings ‘I’m hoping, praying, meditating away’. That line really tops the song off and not too soon after, the well executed chorus.  a 8.5 out of ten. 

The pace of the album slows slightly with the ninth song ‘Mr Evil’. Complex guitar work and interesting song lyrics help to create the vibe of the song.  I give this song a 8 out of ten.

The tenth song on the album ‘Oyster Reach’ is a song which consists of local landmarks across Suffolk. The calming Suffolk air and the birds singing starts the song off. The guitar playing notably sounds more country-like. The local landmarks are repeated through-out the song; ‘Oyster reach down by Ostrich Creak. Orwell bridge stretching beach to beach. Stop to look at Nacton Shores’. I give this song a 7 out of ten.

Overall, this is in my opinion, Tim’s best album he has released. It includes many genres of music, including pop, jazz, blues, quirky and funk. His songs are produced to a high quality, with top notch lyrics and impressive guitar playing.  Effective melodies is a key component of songwriting, something which Tim has pulled off throughout this album. I hope there will be plenty more albums from Tim in the future. This is not just my favorite album from Tim’s collection, but my all time favorite.

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