Despite featuring an all-star cast of B-list British rockers – if that’s not a contradiction in terms – the real brains behind Cats In Space is Mike Moran, the veteran songwriter/record producer.
Moran, you may recall, co-wrote Rock Bottom with Lynsey de Paul, the UK’s 1977 Eurovision Song Contest entry. He also masterminded Barcelona, the classical mash-up between Freddie Mercury and Montserrat Caballé. Cats In Space, would you believe, are somewhere in-between.
ELO, Supertramp, 10cc, Buggles, The Darkness… the reference points come thick and fast, as do the lavish, high-pitched harmonies and boinging Brian May-esque guitar tones. It’s more dated than an Eat Me date factory, of course, but if you’re the kinda guy who thinks John Miles should be on Classic Rock’s next front cover, this is for you.
Cat-scratch beneath the surface, however, and you’ll find some unseemly grouchiness about high-tech gadgetry (Stop), the awfulness of reality TV (Five Minute Celebrity) and the grim state of the modern-day music business (Last Man Standing). Hmm… these Cats got the sour cream.