Sunday, February 17, 2008

Take Me to Your Waterfall

This record looks like it came out on Flying Nun, but as it's Australian it was released by Waterfront - the best Aussie label before Summershine came along. I listened to Widdershins' compilation on Egg (Good Songs 1985-1987) again recently, and realised I didn't fully get it first time around. I was expecting more of the almost Smiths-like jangle of "Now You Know". Instead, some of it was even more low-key than The Lighthouse Keepers (Juliet Ward and Greg Appel's previous band). But now I've got it, and I also looked up the name in a dictionary - what a great word! The songs that really struck a chord were the live recordings that go from quiet, quiet strums to majestic ringing guitars and echoing drum rolls. Dramatic is a word that comes to mind. But what really lifts it above countryfied drivel (don't want to slag off The Triffids but...) is Ward's amazing voice that propels the songs to unknown heights and send shivers down one's spine. A song like "Chainsaw" makes me think simultaneously of The Sundays and Nick Cave's I Had a Dream, Joe album. None of them artists I've listened to for years. Hear for yourself - here is "700 Miles" that starts of with Juliet's golden retriever barking. It was orginally included on a scarce compilation called A Minute to Midnight (1987), you'll learn that and many other interesting facts by visiting their website (yes, they've got one) here. And buy the Egg Records compilation, of course.

CLOUD 38 Widdershins - 700 Miles

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