THE ‘TUNE TAILOR’
Album Review of:
by CHIP TAYLOR
‘Hi everybody, this is Chip Taylor’, introduces a uniquely weird jigsaw of homespun whimsy, an album of intimately whispered conversational anecdotes and confessionals, with occasional backchat dialogue and playful horn-beeps to take out expletives. “Enlighten Yourself” is barely a song at all, more an effortlessly engaging whirl of words aimed at feel-good therapy-phonies. “Barry And Buffalo” is a rough-edged croaky spoken-word piece, a soft-centred routine related like he’s confiding this story about a kid’s golf tournament across a barroom table. “Bobby I Screwed Up” dredges breathlessly apologetic half-forgotten memories of the ‘drunken magic’ of a 1980s recording session spent with Bobby (“He Ain’t Heavy”) Scott. The songs are sometimes achingly raspingly fragile, spun out over feather-light instrumentation… but never underestimate the guy who wrote “Wild Thing”. “Refugee Children” is movingly heartfelt, an acutely personal and damningly political riposte to insular isolationism, touchingly joined on the chorus by his own three granddaughters. While the brothers of the title-song are geologist Barry, and Jon Voight – yes, check out that archive cover-photo and its unmistakably ‘Joe Buck’ from ‘Midnight Cowboy’. Against all logic and reason, this performance hangs together as one of the most enjoyable CDs of 2016.
‘R2: ROCK ‘N’ REEL’ (Vol.2 Issue.61 Jan/Feb)
(UK – January 2017)