bought the album on iTunes to find out if I need a physical copy and here is my first impression short review.
The assumption that the singles might not be the typical music of the album and it is in indeed the old style Rea unexpectedly turned out to be right. The 2 "roady" singles are the songs I love the least on the album and stylistically it had been better without them at all. Actually, there are maximum 4 songs out of 12 (i.e. one third) that are recent style Rea (3 singles incl. Last Train + Money). The rest is exactly like they promised - nostalgic sounds of CR brand Pinky (mostly) and Thinline guitars, with a hint of On the Beach, Strangers, Banana Skin and Blue Cafe albums.
It all reminds me a lot of my 1st listening to King of the Beach album back in 2001: old style Rea, even with lots of electrolics and a small band, after experimantal RtH2 album was like a balm for my soul, though with a couple of odd-sounding songs (title track and Tamatave) and no any real musical revelation.
The music also recalls a lot of the Blue Guitars songs, especially from the discs 7-11, which, in their turn, remind of the older albums named above, but I cannot say they are doubles or self-citings - of course, we all heard it all before, but this I love to hear (unlike the recent style singles) at all times, no matter the similarity.
Musically, I liked the whole album except for the 2 singles, even the widely argued Money. And of course I like the sound of real drums by Martin and the bass and rhythm guitars by Ahwai family, though the overall production and arrangement left me with mixed feelings (thanks to Neil Drinkwater and his "kids' Casio"). I also liked the mastering and engineering quality level, though mixing is not so great and the recording stage isn't either (apparently there is some home-recorded material left on the album).
So, buying the album on vinyl is a waste of money, while CD copy is worth it, considering the album is far beyond my worst expectations - it is much better than I could imagine, even concerning the fact that the old style material was written deliberately to help Chris get back on his feet.
For pre-orders, I am still very sure it is all because of singing by Chris as offered by BMG for the firt 500 buyers. Have patience or buy the digital copy)