New Zealander Royce purports to be a bit of a fan of Led Zeppelin, Prince and grunge in his bio, but, after repeated listenings to his new album We Can Win, I’d place him somewhere firmly in the early to mid eighties. And obviously, in the world of Sentinel Daily, that’s not a bad place to be.

Opening track Keep Going On has a hint of fellow Kiwis Dragon, closer We Can Win brings to mind John Farnham, and throughout the rest of the album you’ll get names flashing before the eyes like Billy Squier and Mister Mister, which when mashed together makes for a pretty listenable, if rather polite, set of songs.

Royce sings, plays drums, guitars, keys and bass and writes the songs, with lead guitar aid from Andy Moore and more bass from Chris Tupnall; together the three gel well, and apart from the clunky funk of Mrs. Vain, they create a smooth radio rock amalgam that may be a little unchallenging to the ear but certainly rewards any listener with the time to live with the songs for a while.

The thumping pop rock of Dreams of the Common Man sparked the biggest chord with this reviewer, a pulsing synth line giving off big Rick Springfield whiffs, but for all the ‘spot the influence’ games to be played here it’s worth noting that Royce himself actually has a pretty original and distinctive voice, and this in itself gives a point of difference to an album whose style of music overall is very familiar.

The anthemic Crossroads is another highlight – the chorus is quite superb – and if you like the style of music described here it’s hard to see anything on We Can Win causing too much distress – so I’s have to say that this album is well worth a spin!

We Can Win is out now.