Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Son of Dave: Shake a Bone (Kartel)

Son of Dave has represented an odd entity for some time and this latest outing, produced by the legendary Steve ‘is that a grating sound I can hearing beneath that noise?’ Albini, is no exception. The follow up to 2008’s ‘03’, this is arguably Benjamin Darvill’s most classically blues album yet. Full of slow rhythm, like an ex-con dragging a ball and chain down a Roman road, tracks such as Guilty prove Darvill has the ability to gently cast his harmonica over the top of a beat and enrapture in the process.

He’s warped more into Tom Waits than ever before too. Hell, he even looks like the innocent dreaming stubbly legend on the cover, adorned in a fetching hat and with an earnest stare. The (real) r’n’b blues riffs here, the relative simplicity of the lyrics and the extremely danceable structure to the tunes make it an easily recognisable and accessible record from the anomaly of a modern artist. Highlights include the full on rock out of Revolution Town and the blistering title track which affirms all you ever thought about the wiseness of wearing snakeskin shoes and dancing in the desert. A well-paced record of perfect length, pick it up.
And that’s not to say anything of its published accompaniment. A new book published by those Junko Partners the Stool Pigeon. Two books to commemorate the glorious oversized music paper’s 5th anniversary were released in Islington last month and I was lucky enough to attend the launch. Alongside of a series of incisive and hilarious interviews, Son of Dave’s columns from the paper were released in the form of a new volume entitled We Need You Lazzaro, You Lazy, Greasy Bastard’ – doubtless a hit with the kids section at Waterstones. Funny and fascinating in equal measure, tales of celebrity burials and great music adorn its pages. Quite a character then, and a great musician to boot.

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