Rather convenient surname this young gent carries, no? And, like the other, the more famous, Cale, Zach tends to bend the rock idiom into its antecedents and then flip it casually into the near future, maybe just tomorrow, though he does so more twangily and with definite Dylan leanings...except for the fact that the estimable Bob never decided to wend his way this smoothly nor quite so prog-folkily. In point, it may be that the very trick of carrying such simultaneity so adeptly accounts for Cale's growing acclaim, the inspissation of what one critic has called the "beautifully raw" with an almost chambery sophistication. This CD starts with the latter, a chill track carrying far-yesteryear overtones that yield into the Zimmermany Day for Night before heading back to Romantic fields in the brocaded Hello Oblivion. Then there's a melancholic Drakian interlude, We Had Our Day in the Sun, with its pinging fogs and serpentine pathways.
The entire repertoire is moody, as it should be with such lonely, lovelorn, torn, and broken souls and spirits, people trudging their way through life, angels sighing above, devils lurking below:
Weary we become with hardships daily born
But there's a hopeful smile under the travail and bitter experience, a wistful vision of something better despite it all. The ten musicians accompanying the multi-instrumental troubadour create 4AD baroquity in a heartland vein, one informed by Tennyson and Blake, embroidering the poet's Old West tone with London airs, Manchester rime, and oft more than a hint of a ubiquitously seedy velveteen bordello next door to the town morgue. Thus, don't expect a flock of doves to alight on your speakers as you listen, more like a murder of crows with somnolent eyes and the memory of winter.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2011, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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