Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

Tune of the Week – “Reuben”

No, I didn’t see this one coming. This week, I’ve probably listened to “Tales of Silversleeve” at least three or four times a day. That’s how it happens around here: I’ll return to one or two of the countless new …

Thu, Sep 20, 2007, 10:05

   

No, I didn’t see this one coming.

This week, I’ve probably listened to “Tales of Silversleeve” at least three or four times a day. That’s how it happens around here: I’ll return to one or two of the countless new albums scattered around the room and keep playing it over and over again because it strikes a chord. Last week, I couldn’t get enough of Robert Wyatt’s striking and gorgeous “Comicopera”; this week, it’s Cathy Davey.

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“Tales of Silversleeve” is Davey’s second album, a gigantic leap and bound on from her debut “Something Ilk”. At least, I think it is. Truth is, I can remember very little about her debut bar that it didn’t really resonate. It seemed to be the sum of her influences at that time, an album with no identifiable spark or stripe to its flow. It sounded just like a hundred other albums which came out at the same time, an overproduced ball of indie sludge.

But here’s where the story gets interesting. “Tales of Silversleeve” may well be the most spectacularly beautiful Irish album you’ll hear this year. It has songs galore, but it also has these glorious sounds and flights of imagination where Davey aims for the sky and actually gets there. She’s trying things out, having a go at new ideas and sounding as if she’s having a whale of a time. Every time I hear the album, I find something new on it to think about.

A couple of people have said to me recently that ’07 has been a so-so year for Irish music, but they’re the people who really should listent to Super Extra Bonus Party or Dry County or God Is An Astronaut or The Sick & Indigent Songclub or Somadrone or The Flaws. Maybe they’ll listen to “Tales of Silversleeve” and change their minds. I hope they do.

Anyway, here’s “Reuben” for you. The album is released on October 12 and she’s playing shows all over the place next month. Don’t miss the boat.