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    Elvis Perkins

    elvis perkins in dearland

    Elvis Perkins In Dearland 8 ( 2009 )
    Calling On All Stations / The English Way / War Machine / Never Change / Colours Bleed To Red / The Whisperer / Mercury Summer / Give Me The Sky / Chemical Blood / Tonight We Burn / Damocles / Follow Me Into The Darkness

    Elvis Perkins has taken his time. Born in 1976, this is only his second album yet the very fact he's taken his time results in a mature, ambitious set of wide-ranging songs with proper lyrics that you want to study and remember. He's no Elvis Costello nor Elvis Presley, although both probably influenced him at some stage. Well, his dad was a huge Presley fan, hence the name. His first album didn't feature a full band, so this release introduces 'Dearland' and they provide horns, pump organ, clarinet and banjo. Perkins himself plays guitar, piano, autoharp and harmonica and I have to say just one thing - 'Elvis Perkins In Dearland' is an absolute joy. 'Send My Fond Regards To Lonelyville' for instance plays a particular trick I love. An ever so simple yet jaunty and memorable guitar pattern, lyrics talking about being lonely, an unobrutisve arrangement as the song is key. Really great lyrics throughout and then later on, a brass band joins in. Ever so clever really and Elvis voice, a bit like Ron Sexsmith, carries on deadpan throughout. 'Doomsday' plays a funeral march and then the marching band go off on a jaunt around Brighton in pure, drunken excess. Elvis tells us we shouldn't let 'Doomsday' bother us, which is a nice message in these times of no nice messages at all. After all, if we didn't laugh we'd be crying at the time. 'Doomsday' is enough to indicate that Perkins has a great sense of humour.

    Elvis Perkins is building up a good cult fanbase at the moment and 'Elvis Perkins In Dearland' is only likely to increase that fanbase. Not everything passes muster but then again, if it did, he'd hardly be human. A few songs tend to drag and forget to pack in a melody. Then again, there's always something like 'I Heard Your Voice In Dresden' to captivate you and such moments are plentiful enough for this listener, at least. '123 Goodbye' is the highlight for me, utterly perfect in what it's trying to do. I do prefer his happier tunes, whatever the lyrical outcomes and surprises.

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    this page last updated 21/06/09


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