Welsh singer-songwriter and producer Rod Thomas has been known as Bright Light Bright Light since 2010, but has been active in the music industry for much longer.
After busking in the London underground, several singles, a few EPs, one album under his real name and another album under his stage name (2010’s acclaimed Make Me Believe in Hope), Thomas consolidates his chilled, electronic house-pop sound on the In Your Care EP.
Fans of New Order, The Presets and other melancholy yet melodic synthpop acts will eat this collection of songs up.
Lyrics such as ‘come take me home’ and the distant vocoder harmonies form the murky, sobering tapestry that drapes the EP like a much-needed hug after you have had a bit too much to drink in the club. They reflect the themes of separation and longing, as Thomas spent much time away from family and friends during the EP’s recording. Despite this, Thomas’ lead vocals are incredibly human: warm, earnest and present.
The title track improves upon New Order’s 1963. Apart from its electronic yet organic sound, it shows Thomas doing something that Bernard Sumner could never do: deliver emotive vocals as he pleads on lines such as ‘my dreams are all still in your care’.
An Open Heart is more than just a lovely tribute to True Faith. It’s an affirmative, euphoric work that suggests possibilities of the world around you.
There’s little wonder why Same Dream has been a live favourite in Thomas’ live sets. It’s a mid-tempo danceable bop but its sad yet memorable ‘it’s enough, it’s enough’ hook would make it sound refreshing in the club after the crappy top-40 dance-pop, EDM-lite songs.
Movement in the Dark is a brilliant closer, as a mournful piano ballad backed by ghostly callback vocals. The strings, bright chimes and theme of change conjures the image of movement in the dark in the club as people stumble out of the club into the light.
Thomas has definitely got a thing going as Bright Light Bright Light and listeners should eagerly anticipate the follow-up.