For Fans Of
Something For Kate fans are well aware that if you take Paul Dempsey and pair him with his guitar and nothing else, pure magic happens. So, if Mr. Dempsey, who deserves to be herald as one of Australia’s best and most accomplished musicians, decides to do an acoustic record of covers, everyone should just be thankful and embrace the magic.
That being said, it is slightly disappointing that these songs literally are just left as is, without the usual original twist that SFK give their covers (reference the amazing version of Jebediah’s ‘Harpoon’ for proof). It is literally Dempsey and his guitar, recorded fairly stark with a few harmonies and over dubbed lead riffs here and there. If you were looking at some new takes on old classics you won’t find them here. You will however find Dempsey‘s uniquely beautiful voice offering a sense of nostalgia on some of the best songs ever written.
While the hummed guitar solo in Queen’s ‘I Want To Break Free’ is a little weird, there are some stand-out moments here that are not to be missed, the first of which is the slow and relaxed cover of the INXS classic, ‘Never Tear Us Apart’. The second, You Am I’s ‘Berlin Chair’, an Aussie rock legend covering the greatest Aussie rock song of all time? Come on.
The record is not completely devoid of original flair as Dempsey manages to make Grant Lee Buffalo’s ‘Mockingbirds’ sound like one of his own and lets out some beautiful falsetto melodies at the same time. For the most part however, the record is exactly as the title suggest, it’s karaoke, busting out some classic hits for the fun of it, the difference being, Paul Dempsey is way better at karaoke than you and your drunken friends.
If you have been lucky enough to experience a Paul Dempsey solo live performance, you know that the man is simply amazing. Stick a microphone in front of that, give him some classic tracks to play and let the tape roll, that is what has happened here and it’s freaking great.
1. Don’t Want To Know If You Are Lonely (Husker Du)
2. Jesus Etc. (Wilco)
3. Caroline (Concrete Blonde)
4. I Want To Break Free (Queen)
5. Faith Alone (Bad Religion)
6. Never Tear Us Apart (INXS)
7. Berlin Chair (You Am I)
8. Mockingbirds (Grant Lee Buffalo)
9. What Jail Is Like (Afghan Whigs)
10.History Eraser (Courtney Barnett)
11.Web In Front (Archers of Loaf)