Richard Swift: Dressed Up For the Letdown (Secretly Canadian) BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2007

 |   |  <1 min read

Richard Swift: Most of What I Know
Richard Swift: Dressed Up For the Letdown (Secretly Canadian) BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2007

The previous album by this Californian singer-songwriter -- actually a double disc collection of his previously released singles and EPs -- made an appearance on Elsewhere many months ago and I hailed it to the skies.

And I've played it with alarming frequency ever since a first hearing.

This is his fully-fledged debut album proper, and it follows much the same pattern of his singles: suggestions of Harry Nilsson and Burt Bacharach; a wistful nostalgia for a Tin Pan Alley of 60/70s pop that never existed; lo-fi but cleverly arranged songs; gently soaring optimism against the odds . . .

Melodies here emerge then transform themselves into other equally memorable passages, and while he has a pop sensibility Swift is also a man with an ear on an even more distant past as he suggests ballads from the 40s.

Lovely voice too.

Richard Swift may not shake the world with this one either, but my guess is that in a few years he'll either be huge (unlikely) or someone referred to by a hip new generation.

Be the first on your block . . . 

Share It

Your Comments

Grant Stone - Nov 24, 2008

It's not quite as good as this album, but I'd suggest his Ground Trouble Jaw EP for best of 2008

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Urge Overkill: Rock&Roll Submarine (Redeye)

Urge Overkill: Rock&Roll Submarine (Redeye)

Possibly the most coolly knowing, confidently aloof band since Steely Dan, Urge Overkill out of Chicago were touring mates with Nirvana and Pearl Jam but their stylish and increasingly power pop... > Read more

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2008: James McMurtry: Just Us Kids (Lightning Rod/Elite)

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2008: James McMurtry: Just Us Kids (Lightning Rod/Elite)

The murky photo of a small, barroom audience on the inner sleeve of this brittle and typically dark album by singer-poet McMurtry might have included me. It looks like it was taken in the... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Reem Kelani: Sprinting Gazelle (2006)

Reem Kelani: Sprinting Gazelle (2006)

Subtitled "Palestinian Songs from the Motherland and the Diaspora", this sometimes astonishing debut album remains breathtaking in its scope -- from a lullaby to a moving song of... > Read more

STEELY DAN AND STEVE WINWOOD (2002): Major dudes telling you

STEELY DAN AND STEVE WINWOOD (2002): Major dudes telling you

For a concert by artists who provided the soundtrack to many people's lives for more than three decades since the Sixties, this show at Vector Arena began remarkably low-key when Steve Winwood... > Read more