Second Prize: The Heel Turn (digital outlets)

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Waiting for a Spark
Second Prize: The Heel Turn (digital outlets)
As the man said in his e-mail, it's not often that Glenfield College (on Auckland's North Shore) is a useful old school tie!

True.

He was a student there a couple of decades ago and said he used to get out odd library books and was always a bit confused because on the slip of previous borrowers “one of them was invariably the mysterious "Reid (Staff)".

And that would be me . . . so he – John Palmer – is using the metaphorical school tie to be in touch and draw attention to his lo-key debut album with his band Second Prize, which I take to be out of Australia given the flatten vowels.

At a first listen this seems pretty undercooked folk-rock but after a couple of plays the bent literary/story-telling/imagery starts to stick, and its almost conversational style (Waiting for a Spark, Sneak Around) becomes oddly appealing.

It's laconic and sometimes nasal, there are songs about being in a band (the opener Headphones On sets the suburban tone) and ennui (Waiting for a Spark, the almost heroic pessimism of Final Transmission).

Not an album many will gravitate to and my guess is it will be better received in Australia where there is more of tradition of this style.

Not essential but an interesting and sometimes very amusing starter. Check it out.

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