John ‘Rhino’ Edwards – Just Sayin’ – Album Review

John ‘Rhino’ Edwards – Just Sayin’ – Album Review

4th March 2024 0 By George Simpson

You may not have heard of John ‘Rhino’ Edwards himself, but you’d have to have been living on Planet Zog not to have heard of the band he’s been playing bass in for the last 39 years, Status Quo. The band is now finally winding down after all those years. Indeed main man Francis Rossi has hinted that this year will be Quo’s last, but where have we heard that before?! Anyhoo, it has allowed time for other things, such as Just Sayin’, Rhino‘s third solo album.¬†

Firstly, cast aside all stereotypical thoughts of Quo, the three chords, and all the songs sound the same, etc. The main reason is that what we have here is a really enjoyable eclectic rock album. If you have listened to any of the latter-day Status Quo albums, you’ll know that Rhino‘s songwriting has successfully stretched their musical envelope. Songs like The Oriental, for example,¬† were different, but still undeniably Quo. Once again here, he proves himself a writer of memorable, catchy songs.

 

The album comes roaring out of the traps with the rollicking Can’t Count Me Out, which could also be his mission statement. Driven by an energetic riff rather reminiscent of Can’t Explain by The Who, it’s a breathless three-and-a-half minute to get things going. As if to emphasize the diverse nature of the material on offer here, next up is the infectious, more laid-back Limbo. In contrast to the energy of the opener, here the mood is darker and almost menacing. Then Taking Care Of Mary meets those two tracks in the middle. It’s a great melodic rocker and is my favorite on the album. This is one of those songs that stays in your head long after hearing it.

 

Of course, it has to be said there is still a healthy bit of evidence of his day job present here too. Cracking rockers like My Side Of The Road and Never Too Old To Rock N Roll would fit seamlessly onto any given Quo album. The former is a lovely harmonica-led bluesy number, while the latter is cut from the same singalong cloth that could almost be a Quo trademark. Indeed it features backing vocals from the boss, Mr Rossi, and Keyboards from Andy Bown, so it’s bound to sound not too dissimilar!

One thing I’ve always enjoyed when listening to his songs is his quirky approach to lyrics. Caravan Man could only be written by an Englishman and celebrates the life of towing the proverbial mobile toilet in a cupboard on wheels. Also, it’s hard not to disagree with his take on the bonkers modern life in The PC World. The line ‘you can silence anyone by calling them a ‘phobe or an ist’ hits the nail so squarely on the head, bravo Mr Edwards!¬† There’s the odd song here that’s a bit meh to my ears, such as the whimsical Good Evening Primrose, but they’re few and far between.

Overall, this is a pretty good album.¬† I have been listening to Quo for as long as I can remember, both band and solo work. They were the first band I ever saw live. I’ve been through their dreadful nineties covers period, and came out the other side with them. Having heard everything he’s been involved with, this album is one of his better moments to me.¬†In my opinion, it’s the best of his three solo albums.¬†If, as he has been stating, this is his last solo release, it’s a great way to bow out.¬†

Score: 8/10 

Tracklisting:

1 – Can’t Count Me Out

2 – LImbo

3 – Taking Care Of Mary

4 РNever Too Old To Rock N Roll 

5 – Wizzie Lizzie LA

6 – Good Evening Primrose

7 – Caravan Man

8 РMy Side Of The Road 

9 – The PC World

10 – One Way To Roll

11 РHard Drinking Woman 

12 РTried and Tested 

13 РSpooning 

14 РHappy Ending 

Label: Molano Music

Release Date: 1st March 2024

For all things, John “Rhino” Edwards, click HERE, and to purchase the album, click HERE

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