Graham Reid | | 1 min read
Singer-songwriter Wayne Mason may be best (and in some circles only) known as the guy who wrote the Kiwi classic Nature for the Fourmyula (later covered by the Mutton Birds).
But that was almost four decades ago and he has spent the intervening period crafting equally excellent material for the Warratahs (until '94), and now delivers them on a trickle of solo albums of which this is only the third in 12 years.
Mason's songwriting gift is that nothing -- words or melody -- sounds forced, and here with his small band he offers deeply penetrating lyrics which can be almost unbearably uncomfortable as he (mostly) writes about those empty hours and spaces between lovers when the relationship is over and there is just ache, anger, self-pity turned to resentment, and the need for answers which aren't forthcoming.
This album seeps those emotions and you'd be ill-advised to undertake it if you are going through similar circumstances -- although maybe Mason's eloquent if pained articulation of those nerve-end days might actually be helpful.
There's no doubt angry songs like Pull Down the Shutters also have a cathartic effect.
I have no idea what has gone on in Mason's life but I hope it isn't what this album suggests.
Previously when Mason has written of such universal emotions he has couched them in the language of landscape, place and metaphor -- but this sounds much closer to the heart and home. And raw.
Not an easy listen for those who are paying close attention. But another catalogue of rare songs by one of our finest songwriters.