Known Associates: Penny Love (Warcat)

 |   |  1 min read

Known Associates: Made of Blue
Known Associates: Penny Love (Warcat)

Auckland singer/writer/guitarist Warren Cate of Known Associates has made some fine and deliberately unpolished rock albums under his own name in the past but here, with a team of equals who hunkered down for weekly sessions last year to toughen themselves up and work out material, he excels himself.

Cate always possessed a slightly dangerous edge in his vocals but here he sounds angry and desperate and is singing like his life depended on it (Mercy with its "eye for an eye" sentiment, Wishbone City). With guitarist Grant Wills adding electrifying, tight and powerhouse solos and an adrenalin-fueled rhythm section (Mike Franklin-Browne on drums, longtime bassist Andrew Buckton back again), this one flies out of the speakers like the missing link between the best material off the Stones' It's Only Rock'n'Roll (What It's All About) and the pub rock energy of Dr Feelgood's Stupidity (Made of Blue).

They barely pause for a breath -- there's a real slew into Seventies rock on Tell Me It's Alright -- and it isn't until five songs in (the dreamy Show Me where Cate still keeps that sneering edge) that the pace slows.

Almost out of earshot on Waning Moon you can catch a whiff of Hendrix's Spanish Castle Magic, Dark Sword throbs with metal menace (a little bit cliched but convincingly impassioned) and Hand of God finds them at their most evocative, Doors-like and trippy.

Not much here breaks the 3.45 minute mark so nothing outstays its welcome and you don't doubt this band live would be a hazard to sensitive souls . . . and Cate's restrained fury would put on notice those half his age.

Warren Cate answered the Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire here.

Share It

Your Comments

Simon Hema - Jun 15, 2011

Heard some of this album in a cafe in Glendowie. Thought "Mercy" had a Stevie Ray vibe. Will look out for it

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Antony and the Johnsons: Swanlight (Spunk)

Antony and the Johnsons: Swanlight (Spunk)

This fourth album by Antony confirms what many already suspect, that a little of this divine, sublime voice can go a long way. All that high drama and quivering vocals, the allusive lyrics, the... > Read more

Harry Manx and Kevin Breit: In Good We Trust (Stony Plain/Southbound)

Harry Manx and Kevin Breit: In Good We Trust (Stony Plain/Southbound)

These two guitarists are among the best in the wide country/alt.country/roots music arena. The evidence, should you doubt it, is all over this intimate and intelligent collection which opens with a... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

More to life than cars and girls?

More to life than cars and girls?

A couple of weeks ago a strange sound came from our modest Mazda Demio so I confidently popped the bonnet. As I stood looking at the unfamiliar coils of metal and rubber it occurred to me it had... > Read more

Perrey and Kingsley; Strangers in the Night (1971)

Perrey and Kingsley; Strangers in the Night (1971)

Taken from the album Kaleidoscopic Variations; Electronic Pop Music of the Future by innovators and composers Jean Jacques Perrey and Gershon Kingsley, this might be better subtitled "When... > Read more