Where I work we occasionally have overflow from the MAG guys. They receive so many CDs each month hoping for a few lines in Music Australia Guide (which you can find in your local JB Hi-Fi Store here in Australia) there is just no way they can get to them all. So every month or so a massive box is dumped on the lunchroom table and everyone rifles through it.
Most are looking for the latest and greatest music, but of late I’ve been grabbing those that look interesting but have been avoided by others.
That’s how I got Nicholas Ray’s “…in a shoebox under the bed” and happened to finally take a listen to it.
As always I want to know a little more about the artist and Nicholas provides plenty of links so you can cyber-stalk him but his bio is incredibly lacking.
The style of the album is eclectic, when I first read from him that he felt “Black Dog” probably isn’t radio friendly I didn’t know what to expect. But he should rethink his position. In the age of Julia and Angus Stone and Mumford and Son even “Black Dog” has a place on the radio. It has a some strange vocal manipulations and a Bollywood/African-type feel to the track, especially evident at the start.
The stand out tracks for me are:
“It’s All My Fault”
Seems a little maudlin but I like it. A song about a secret that gets out because a friend used it to gain some form of leverage. And now the subject of the secret believes he only has himself to blame.
The more funky upbeat song on the album. Its fast pace nature is pleasing to listen to.
That it was recorded in his front room seems of little note these days, it seems the way most indies are going. With lower costs of production and direct publishing to iTunes it makes sense.
It’s an interesting album with a lot of influences you’ll hear throughout the tracks. Probably not for everyone but I’m glad I picked it up from the pile and gave it a go.