This is where this reviewing thing gets difficult. I like Dan Kelly. I'm in two minds as to which of the two albums we have I like best, although my favourite song's on the other album (Drunk on Election Night which has strong language if that's a concern for you).
I'm very fond of his uncle, Paul Kelly, who's something of an institution in Australian music. And I could wax lyrical about him, but I won't because I might be reviewing one of his albums later.
My main problem is, I like this album. It's good music-to-have-friends-over by. It's nice in the car. I can cook to it, it's well put together and Checkout Cutie really rocks. But I don't love it, I don't have a long history with Dan, and I haven't played both albums often enough to write much about them.
I guess I should play them some more, so I can have more of an opinion.
VERDICT: TURN IT UP
Apart from being the nephew of an Australian icon, Dan Kelly is a very talented man born in a country that often ignores its intelligent, articulate, consummate musicians in favour of the big, loud, dumb fun ones. It's sad to say but the average Aussie sees people such as Dan as either being a smart-arse or being conniving. He is neither.
This album was Dan and his band’s first and my personal favourite of the two they released. I know Mine is more a fan of the other and I don’t doubt my fondness for it too but overall, I prefer this album. There's not a dud song among the lot although stylistically, it shifts all over the place. Instead of being messy, it's like walking through an art gallery, where you can admire each well-framed piece.
Dan Kelly wears his influences well, though. There's certainly something of his Uncle Paul in his lyrical humour and his ability to capture and contain a beautiful melody. And there's the judicious use of the Americana palette as well but not overly so… Oh, what bullshit. I hate trying to fucking categorise it so I won‘t. This is an awesome album and I’m calling this my first Forgotten Gem.
VERDICT: TURN IT UP
For more information:http://www.dankelly.com.au/
In our collection, we also have Drowning In The Fountain Of Youth