Charlie Horse: I Hope I Am Not a Monster (laughingoutlaw.com.au)

 |   |  <1 min read

Charlie Horse: I Killed My Mind
Charlie Horse: I Hope I Am Not a Monster (laughingoutlaw.com.au)

Better a few months late than not at all for this gritty, pleasingly ragged and sometimes boisterous rock from an Australian band which has done the character-building work through pubs but sensibly take themselves off to a cabin the Blue Mountains where they write and have a studio.

The focus of the band is on singers/writers Crystal Rose and Paul McDonald who have an ear for darkly dramatic and battered ballads, and fuel things by lighting a kerosene fire beneath them.

As one Australian website offered, this is what Lucinda Williams might have sounded like if she'd jammed with the Pretenders . . . and that's about right, if they were all Australians and had been broke in Balmain at the time. And pretty wired up in the studio because a clock was ticking.

They are also twanging and ambitious musically (the country-rock of The Lights Are Fading Behind Me, Cruel Sea-meets-Divynls?), nicely sneering (the cynical bite of I Killed My Mind) and deliver up classy twang'n'jangle pop-rock (Southern Voices).

When this debut came out in Australia some months back it scored 4/5 in the SMHerald and 4/5 in Drum Media, and the band were hailed as real contenders in that tough marketplace.

Perhaps they will only make sense over this side of the Tasman when/if they tour. But this is the kind of album that gets people on Facebook starting a petition.

Raw, rowdy and rocking. With heart behind the bulletproof vest. 

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Jesca Hoop: Memories Are Now (SubPop)

Jesca Hoop: Memories Are Now (SubPop)

Now half a dozen albums into a career (one with Sam Beam aka Iron and Wine) this transplanted American -- who lived in Manchester for a while then returned to the US  -- is almost emblematic... > Read more

ONE WE MISSED: Beth Hart and Joe Bonamassa: Live in Amsterdam (Southbound)

ONE WE MISSED: Beth Hart and Joe Bonamassa: Live in Amsterdam (Southbound)

In a recent doco about Muddy Waters, American guitarist Joe Bonamassa was talking about the blues and said, "The British blues for me was more immediate and more exciting. It was louder, a Les... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

GUEST WRITER OWEN WOOD sees the writing on the walls

GUEST WRITER OWEN WOOD sees the writing on the walls

At some time in the mid Nineties when I was working in Parnell, there was an open air carpark just off the main road. The back wall was perhaps two storeys high and painted white. One day,... > Read more

Katchafire: Say What You're Thinking (EMI)

Katchafire: Say What You're Thinking (EMI)

About six years ago I first encountered Hamilton reggae band Katchafire playing in a pretty ropey provincial bar. I'd met them backstage beforehand -- actually in a room full of beer barrels --... > Read more