Ex Icicle Works front man Ian McNabb returns for the first time in four years with an album that’s already receiving much widespread critical acclaim. With an established solo career tucked firmly away in his locker, including a Mercury prize nomination for ‘Head Like a Rock’ in 1996, Mcnabb has never really been a follower of fashion - more of a poet in song, gaining the reputation along the way as a truly authentic and inspiring master craftsman song writer; even if he is one of the music business’ more closely guarded secrets. Consistency has become his middle name. Underrated, understated or misunderstood? Well whatever it has been these past twenty plus years, he has certainly never received the true acclaim that he has worked tirelessly for and surely by now thoroughly deserves. However he’s still writing ‘Great Things’ and this album once again confirms Ian Mcnabb’s pedigree and that he is still very much at the races. Title tract ‘Great Things’ is a huge song, a delightful opener that finds the man at his very, very best. A part time ‘The Waterboys’ collaborator in the past, he has called in Mr Waterboy front man Mike Scott who contributes backing vocals and guitar on ‘New Light’ during which he dreamily sings of being in a better place. 'All About a Woman’, spills with tales of love and dreams of mystical beauties, finding him “Still chasing the girls over Primrose Hill”. ‘This Love’ tells the story of a magical tangible lover. A truly beautiful song. As ever it’s the lyrics that bring the songs to life, packed full of the usual charm and dry sense of humour that we have become accustomed to over the years. ‘I Can’t Help It If I’m Great’ epitomises this in full and it sounds like he’s having fun, with this tongue in cheek self proclamation. (He really can’t help it?). This is a totally absorbing composition, with some big songs that will once again live long in the mind, but after all these years we really wouldn’t have expected anything else, would we? The man that never disappoints is back and bang on form. This is once again an album of pure quality. Ian Mcnabb is one of Britain’s greatest musical talents, so don’t let this one pass you by.
Steve Plunkett 8/10