James McCann: Where Was I Then (Torn and Frayed/Border)

 |   |  <1 min read

James McCann: Black Brown and Blue
James McCann: Where Was I Then (Torn and Frayed/Border)

McCann was once in the Australian rock band the Drones who get my vote for their great album title: Wait Long By The River & The Bodies Of Your Enemies Will Float By. (Don't we wish?)

The Drones make dark and dramatic bluesy-rock which owes debts to diverse sources from Tom Waits and Neil Young, to fellow Aussie rockers the Triffids and Van Morrison.

Their new album Gala Mill (which I admit I haven't heard) was released in Australia last month and has had An Important Australian Critic calling them "the most important rock band in the country".

Good pedigree then for McCann who here calls on friend and Drones frontman Gareth Liddiard to co-produce this, his solo debut which is a dense, raw, and urban-blues affair -- although the slide guitar and violin sometimes evoke Australia's Big Red Centre in much the same way as Tex Perkins and the Cruel Sea used to do.

It has a desperate and edgy feel, and probably isn't an easy proposition for most people -- but his impassioned style can make for gripping listening.

This is a challenge for young players, but my best guess is that in two or 10 years people will be saying, "Yeah, that James McCann album, man . . . "

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

RECOMMENDED REISSUE: The Stones; Three Blind Mice (Flying Nun)

RECOMMENDED REISSUE: The Stones; Three Blind Mice (Flying Nun)

Of the four bands on the famous Flying Nun Dunedin Double EP – recorded in the front room of a Christchurch flat in '82 -- the Stones looked to be here for a good time but not a long time.... > Read more

Johnny Devlin: How Would Ya Be (Ode)

Johnny Devlin: How Would Ya Be (Ode)

I was too young to be swept up in the fervour surrounding Johnny Devlin, New Zealand's first shirt-rippin' stage-ragin' rock'n'roll star. But my older sister certainly had a Devlin EP --... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Singapore: Welcome to Hell

Singapore: Welcome to Hell

As travellers or tourists we often go a long way to see the beautiful, the breathtaking and sometimes the just plain bizarre. No trip to Tucumcari in New Mexico is perhaps complete without a... > Read more

Walter Robertson: Sputterin' Blues (1955)

Walter Robertson: Sputterin' Blues (1955)

When Roger Daltrey of the Who deliberately stuttered in My Generation it was in some sense to capture the frustration of youth, and also to add piquancy to what might come next when he sang... > Read more