Usually found fronting the band from which he takes his name (Bromide not Simon,) The Waiting Room is the first sonic nibble of a debut solo album to follow. And what a tasty morsel it is too. Lyrically it speaks of twists of fate, of things that didn’t happen for one reason or another and, via the fantastic line “The Postal Service Saved My Life,” of a letter proposing marriage which never arrives, the sender of which takes the empty response as his answer.
The jangling pop-rock which drives The Waiting Room reminds me of everything that has ever been great about the music which sprouts in the place where those genres meet, the infectiousness of the former dancing deftly with the drive and groove of the latter, and the sonic echoes of smart and articulate artists from The Beatles to The Church to Neil Young…not to mention Elvis Costello and a host of other greats… flit across the music whether consciously or unbidden.
After all, it is impossible to write music without some of the past finding its way in, but it is the way that you balance that familiarity with enough freshness that is the difference between adding something worthy to the modern musical canon and merely plagiarising it.
This first solo outing for Simon Bromide is most definitely the former.