Monday, October 31, 2005

The Brave and the Bold cd review




Now this really is an interesting collaboration. Tortoise and Will Oldham/Bonnie 'Prince' Billy are not exactly similar artists. Oldham is the king of simple and straightforward indie alt-folk. The only experimental thing about him is his wide range of monikers. Tortoise howerver are an entirely different kettle of fish. Tortoise favour grand, instrumental soundscapes and aren't regarded as the most accessible of groups. There are similarities: both are from Chicago, and Oldham is keen on collaborations, his last record, Superwolf made jointly with Matt Sweeney.

Instead of writing new material together, they decided to reinterpret a wide range of covers. The ten tracks range from Elton John's Daniel, to Bruce Springsteen's Thunder Road; but none are as you've heard them before. Predictably it's a little hit and miss. Like most collaborations some tracks lean to one artist and few find true balance. But fans of either artist will find something to enjoy and though the quality varies, for the most part it is of a high standard. All tracks abound with creativity and ingenuity, a truly Brave and Bold side project.

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