Personnel: John Power (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, background vocals); Liam Tyson (acoustic guitar, electric guitar, background vocals); Keith O'Neill (drums, percussion, background vocals); Peter Wilkinson (background vocals).
Audio Mixers: John Power; Tristin Norwell.
Liner Note Author: Terry Staunton.
Recording information: Real World Studios, Box; The Astoria Studio, London.
Editor: Karl Flaschke.
Photographers: Martyn Goodacre; Barry Dawson.
Arrangers: John Power; Tristin Norwell.
Cast's fourth album starts off with a big pop bang and never lets up. "Desert Drought" is a whirling blast of horns, bongos, soulful backup vocals, and John Power's reedy and wailing vocals that sound a bit like what the Stone Roses may have done if they hadn't disappeared up their own arses. The song's message is one of positivity and hope and that feeling runs throughout the whole album, especially on the sprawling and semi-epic "Jetstream." So does a sense of sonic adventurousness as each song sounds like a lot of time was spent on the small details -- the surface noise on "Kingdom & Crowns," the cheesy wah-wah guitar on "I Never Can Say," the circus-like keyboards on "High Wire," the parping flute on the groovy "U-Turn." Beetroot is a really solid modern rock record; John Power's vocals are great and the songwriting is uniformly strong. Yet another case of a band doing their best work once no one cares about them anymore. If you were a fan of Cast and wrote them off you really should give them another chance. ~ Tim Sendra