The Darlings: The Cicada Sessions (Ode)

 |   |  <1 min read

The Darlings: So Near So Far
The Darlings: The Cicada Sessions (Ode)

The Darlings are New Zealand singer Jackie Clarke and singer-songwriter Callie Blood with drummer-to-the-stars Wayne Bell, here mostly playing acoustic guitar -- which makes them somewhat of a Kiwi supergroup given their long pedigrees in various band and studio sessions.

Together they make what their bio calls "grown-up pop", which is a very apt description given the classy and classic harmonies here (think Beatles, girl groups, Bacharach) and tinges of alt.country brought into memorable songs which could have stepped out of the mid 60s (or mid 80s when pop melodies reclaimed the ground from post-punk).

They aren't shy about tossing in an 80s sky-scaling guitar solo (Brett Adams) either, but this one is at its best when restaint rules -- as it mostly does.

There is a retro feel about much of what is here (is it just me or that a smidgen of Pat Benatar balladry in there?) and if it doesn't take the risks it might then that doesn't really diminish an album that is long on pop hooks and songs which grab after a first hearing.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music at Elsewhere articles index

Julian Temple Band: Quiet Earth (Oscillosonic/Yellow Eye)

Julian Temple Band: Quiet Earth (Oscillosonic/Yellow Eye)

Noticed how in action movies so few actors speak these days? They tend use an amplified whisper which has the effect of raising tension -- even when very little is happening. San... > Read more

Cut Off Your Hands: Hollow (Speak N Spell)

Cut Off Your Hands: Hollow (Speak N Spell)

Frankly, when I first encountered Cut Off Your Hands two things struck me: First, how do you do that? (You get one off and then . . .), and more importantly how their bouncy pop-rock would travel.... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Elsewhere Art . . . Vernon Reid

Elsewhere Art . . . Vernon Reid

This collage was very simple but oddly enough it took quite a long time to execute properly. It is of Vernon Reid from the band Living Colour and it accompanied a 2017 interview with him, the... > Read more

GUEST WRITER STEVE GARDEN considers the fine art of the piano tuner

GUEST WRITER STEVE GARDEN considers the fine art of the piano tuner

You would be forgiven for thinking that a film about piano tuning would be enough to test the stamina of even the most hardened cinephile, but despite the rarefied world in which Pianomania is... > Read more