CRASHING IN WITH AN AGGRESSIVE TAKE ON CALIFORNIA EARTHQUAKE, THERES AN IMMEDIATE GROUNDSHIFT IN LLOYD COLES SOUND FOR NEW ALBUM STANDARDS (RELEASED NEXT WEEK ON TAPETE RECORDS).
StandardsThe wrecking-ball / reconstruction cover (John Hartford penned, and hit single for Mama Cass in 1968) comes as something of a shock a timely one after Coles steady slowing down of the heart in a decade as self-styled middle-aged folksinger.
The inspiration came from someone even further along the creative curve and mortal coil. Asked to review Bob Dylans TEMPEST, last summer, Cole was surprised by what he heard between the grooves of the septuagenarians 35th studio record: Its not his best album, but it has an inspirational vibrancy that is astonishing for someone aged 72! I heard that record and thought Damn! – I took it as a kick up the backside. Id been languishing. Some years I wouldnt even write a song. Ive got all these notebooks full of unfinished ideas so I just worked on them bloody hard.
WOMENS STUDIES recalls the drunk-punch of TO THE LIONS (from 1991′s DONT GET WEIRD ON ME, BABE), while SILVER LAKE is a FOREST FIRE-like slowburn dowsed by the cooler water of mid-life. The metronomic math-chop of OPPOSITES DAY (referencing Televisions MARQUEE MOON) and the wistful Dylan-inflections of single PERIOD PIECE the songwriter visiting New York memories from another life are the best of many fine moments here, suggesting that Cole has found himself again somewhere down in the dust of his own record collection.
The electric charge of STANDARDS serves sonic notice that though the ex-Commotion may have drifted quietly towards the golf course and a tendency to strap on an acoustic to profess to being dry, a scientist (2002′s MUSIC IN A FOREIGN LANGUAGE) and all dried up inside (2010′s WHAT IN THE WORLD), there is still actually blood, beer and bile coursing through his veins: its Cole’s most city record in years.
Publication: The Mouth Magazine
Publication date: 21/06/13