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“Alex Highton’s second album surfaced towards year’s end, but any waves of wonder were lost in the pre-Christmas shemozzle.

The Scouser singer-songwriter deserved better. His follow-up to the folky and bucolic Woodditton Wives Club (2012) changes tack to deliver a genre-crossing, inventive and lyrically adroit album, loosely themed around the question of the existence of God, no less.

Highton is well armed for the task. He knows how to write a memorable tune, and his lyrics are clever and provocative – serious but not stodgy. Traces of English folk remain in songs such as the eclectic opener, You Don’t Own This Life, but there are also shades of other distinctive English voices ( Paddy McAloon, Alex Turner), while Highton cites Sufjan Steven as a major influence.

Quirky, interesting and very enjoyable.