Once of the band The Havenots, our man has suffered a few knockbacks in his time. But Dullaghan is persisting with making music, so good on him. Will it appeal to you ?
Liam fell into collaborating with Lee Russell, who plays many instruments and works on various productions. These cuts were assembled over a three-year period, in an old Wesleyan chapel. Dullaghan claims his pivotal inspirations were the third Big Star album (now there’s a group with some downbeat moments of history!) and Wilco’s ‘Summerteeth’
so compromise and despair aren’t far from the key ingredients. I’m surprised Bob’s ‘Blood On The Tracks’ wasn’t cited….one quote about Dullaghan infers that he enjoys being morose. There are writers like that, but you either get the songs out and move along OR you wallow. In the latter case, my usual thought is ‘get a therapist ‘ (and don’t share your misery with us… )
‘Radio Verona’ is a worldweary acoustic lament with a breathy vocal and lovely melody, weirdly reminiscent of Don Maclean’s ‘Vincent’ in feel ; a complete change of pace for ‘What If We Win’ but again a restrained vocal, plus changes of tempo which I like ( after all, the Beatles ‘Day In The Life’ had odd tempo changes that now sound entirely natural).
‘New Barcelona’ has odd quasi-Harrison slide guitar and that sandpapered singing and a yearning feel. ‘Ribbons and Shreds’ for all its gentle twinkling IS depressing ! ‘Paradise Beach’ is full-blooded rock like Teenage Fanclub given the electric shock treatment they desparately need. Calling a single ‘ I’m Just ****ed Without You’ ain’t the way to a ‘Songs of Praise’ booking, fella…anyway i like most of the other compositions on this set more than this. ‘Rotten Apples’ is a beautiful lyric, like the mellotron effect as well ; closer ‘It’s You or Me Cried the Moon’ has an Elliott Smith mood but works as a last track.
Lovely moments, Liam but for Christ’s sake do justice to your heart and talent and move forward, look outwards, there’s folk worse off
Pete Sargeant www.fairhearing.co.uk