Rating:

* * * *

On 2008 album Tim Finn offered

More Fool Me

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, a song about his estrangement from fellow former Split Enz founder Phil Judd. On this, his second solo album after breaking his silence on 2006's disquieting

Mr Phudd And His Novelty Act

, Judd also has a song about the Enz. It's called

Wankers

.

To be fair, it's addressed to those who just didn't get the band in that early mad-eyed Judd era - though he's also bitter at the recent Enz reunion ("30 years later they get back together, apparently I don't exist ...").

And there are other moments of disarming lyrical candour on this (like

Shy

), albeit they can get lost in the strangulations of Judd's adenoidal delivery. But the voice, best remembered from his post-Enz Swingers hit,

Counting the Beat

is still in fine, if helium-powered, nick. Even when it's going a bit

Goon Show

- Judd eulogised Spike Milligan on

Phudd

. Here, Judd, long risking being seen as NZ rock's Syd Barrett, pays tribute to the late Pink Floyd-ite on

Nobody Home

, complete with chorus spelling out his name and allusions to Barrett's songs.

If all that begs the indulgence, it's more than compensated for by its line in guitar-scorched pop. Especially on the opener

Hanging By a Thread, Be My, Can of Worms

and the closing

Vixen

which sound like time-stood-still extensions of his Swingers and Schnell Fenster years. And Old Enzers, possibly accepting there won't be a

Mental Notes

line-up reunion any time soon, should still find enchanting echoes of way back then on the title track and

Remind Me To Forget

.

Russell Baillie