Flash: Flash

Forty years on, Flash are back and they’re naming names.

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Formed in 1971 by vocalist Colin Carter and ex-Yes guitarist Peter Banks, Flash issued three albums during a turbulent initial two-year existence before imploding fractiously during a US tour.

Now reunited, albeit without Banks (who sadly died in March), this album offers the first new Flash music in more than four decades.

Pieced together over the last three years by a revised line-up led by Carter and bassist-turned-guitarist Ray Bennett, this comeback opus preserves the key elements of the group’s original formula – nimble psychedelic rock, healthy choruses, rich Hammond organ – but manages to avoid sounding prehistoric.

That Flash would dare to take a stab at Nine Inch Nails’ Hurt, extending it to over nine minutes of stark, virtuoso bleakness, confirms their subversive streak. From the athletic fluency of Night Vision to Grand Canyon’s panoramic serenity and the harmonious Something So Dark, complete with irresistible stacked vocals, Flash’s original material does them great credit.

Just why they’ve also seen to revisit the brooding Manhattan Morning – from third studio album Out Of Our Hands – is unclear. Still, this is a highly creditable homecoming.