Dean & Britta: Back Numbers (Zoe)

 |   |  <1 min read

Dean & Britta: Teen Angel
Dean & Britta: Back Numbers (Zoe)

The main players here are former Kiwi Dean Wareham and Britta Phillips, one half of the New York-based band Luna whose distinctive, moody style drew from the template set down by early Velvet Undergound. In fact Luna opened for VU at one of those fraught 90s reunions.

Wareham was also in the earlier indie band Galaxie 500. Together D&B provided the score to the Oscar-nominated movie The Squid and the Whale, and their debut album L'Avventura was produced by Tony Visconti who steered classic albums by Bowie and T. Rex. Back with Visconti for this subtle, low-lights and elegantly spare collection, it sounds in places as if the spirit of Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra had been genetically modified by the Cowboy Junkies: dreamlike vocals, lyrics like "wait for me at the bottom of the sea", melodies which turn on the most simple of chord changes . . .

And that Hazlewood connection is reenforced by their cover of his You Turned My Head Around.

Luna only ever enjoyed a cult following despite some fine albums (Lunapark, Bewitched, Penthouse), but anyone who heard those outings will readily sign up for this one.

If Wareham's body of work is new to you then this laconic, brooding, Lou Reed-influenced and love-saturated collection is a great place to start.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Gram Parsons: Warm Evenings, Pale Mornings, Bottled Blues (Raven)

Gram Parsons: Warm Evenings, Pale Mornings, Bottled Blues (Raven)

As Australian compiler Glenn A. Baker notes in the essay accompanying this excellent 21-track, 75-minute collection, country-rock visionary Parsons was never embraced by country audiences back... > Read more

Sonic Youth: Hits are for Squares (Geffen)

Sonic Youth: Hits are for Squares (Geffen)

Smart move under a great title. Not a "greatest hits" (has there been even one?) or even a "best of", but a selection of their favourite SY tracks chosen by the likes of... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE COMPILER'S QUESTIONNAIRE: Grant Gillanders

THE FAMOUS ELSEWHERE COMPILER'S QUESTIONNAIRE: Grant Gillanders

When Auckland's Grant Gillanders puts together a compilation or prepares a reissue of New Zealand music – and he has done at least two dozen in the past decade or so – it's not for... > Read more

THE BARGAIN BUY: Roy Orbison; 60 Essential Recordings

THE BARGAIN BUY: Roy Orbison; 60 Essential Recordings

Now that Roy walks among us again – or at least appears on stage as a hologram almost 30 years after his death – lets throw a spotlight on his early catalogue which was when he made his... > Read more