C2S8CD15 picked by Twitter friend @dazlee1 a keen lover of music and one of the few people that still remembers Icehouse and The Big Dish (but I’m not talking about either of those bands today!) @dazlee1 picked The John Butler Trio – Sunrise Over Sea, and this has been a great listen and a surprise to me and here’s why.
In 2009 I went to Manchester to see Jack Johnson until then I had really embraced the surfers who sing music vibe, having CD’s by Jack Johnson, Glove, Donavon Frankenreiter and The John Butler Trio, the Jack Johnson gig turned out to be really boring and as sometimes happens to me a bad gig turns me off the artist. I have since returned to Donavon Frankenreiter and his wonderful soulful tunes but John Butler has sat on the shelf dismissed along with Johnson as dull. How wrong I was the last thing The John Butler Trio are is dull, and the only way they would sound anything like Jack Johnson is if someone stuck a rocket of funky Jam fusion up Jack’s arse!
The John Butler Trio are from Australia, and prior to writing this tried to think of any other Australian artists I had music by, AC/DC and Nick Cave came to mind quickly, then INXS and Icehouse and more currently the wonderful Alex Lloyd, I don’t have any Kylie (honest) and can safely say I have never owned that horrible single by Men at Work, but it appears that my music collection is somewhat short of music from the land down under! I have a couple of John Butler Trio studio albums and a live album and think this equates to half of John Butlers musical output, but think I might be looking out for the rest after rediscovering this artist.
So to the music, first and foremost this music makes me want to dance, not, nice dancing where you just want to be part of the crowd, this music makes me want to spin like a top in the middle of the street like Tasmanian Devil with a firecracker tied to its tail (if they have tails) without care of who might see me or what they might think. Listening to this CD in the car made me use the peddles as drums, and this sometimes isn’t the best idea when your pumping the accelerator like a bass drum and look down to realise you are doing 90 miles an hour! (Sorry Officer)The bass is high in the mix and goes from high funk to reggae beats with easy. The drums seem tribal at some points on the album, driving the song along. There is a couple of chilled songs on the album John Butler playing banjo and acoustic guitar in the quieter moments but most of the album falls in the high tempo beach funk (think I might copyright that) 4 songs come in at over 6 minutes as the beat rises in the song and the jam begins within the song, I suspect that live some of the songs life of their own and as some of you might know how I like a jam band so this really is my kind of music. Its hard to pull favourites off this album, but Treat Yo Mama, Zebra, Bound To Ramble and the albums epic closing track Sometimes as a bit special.
Whilst on the topic of the final track I have to mention a bug bear of mine, hidden tracks on albums, WHAT IS THE POINT? They mess with your iPod, play havoc with your CD player that doesn’t stop when it should and all round are just a pain in the arse, put the track on or leave it off, don’t ‘surprise’ us with a hidden track, (oh yeah and then mention who wrote the ‘hidden track’ in the liner notes!) If you own White Ladder by David Gray after track one has started playing press fast reverse and keep your finger down, there is a hidden track at the beginning of the CD, clever, NO, stupid, YES. Just stop it. Rant over. The reason for the rant as the last track Sometimes is around 12 minutes long then we have another 5 minutes of noises of sorts, just unnecessary.
So rant aside this is a wonderful album be an underrated artist who I would recommend you all take a listen to.