google5fdb2843fc4f1b5b.html Rock Chic: Dan Patlansky - Dear Silence Thieves

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Dan Patlansky - Dear Silence Thieves

South African blues-rocker Dan Patlansky has paid his dues when it comes to breaking into the music business. He’s been round the block and back again and after 15 years with his seventh album, he’s here to prove this is his best yet.

From supporting Bruce Springsteen in front of 65,000 people, to performing the slightly more modest Borderline in London this year to launch the album, the weighty expectation generated from glowing reviews is justified. 

A slickly produced album with subtle layering of blues, rock, funk and a discreet pop agenda is Dear Silence Thieves.

Opening track ‘Backbite’ evokes hints of Stevie Ray Vaughan with a funky undertone, setting the standard nicely for a consistently good album. 

‘Hold On’ is a true blues number, the only one on the album in fact. Giving blues a chance to shine is always a good thing, but who says tradition has to be rigidly stuck to? It’s a mix of rhythmic blues-rock with a melodic core, combined with great production that makes this uniquely Patlansky.

Slowing things down with ‘Pop Collar Jockey’, lazy and hypnotic in a smouldering, swaggering kind of way with gravelly, gritty vocals and echoing guitar, then makes way for the kick in the arse that is ‘Fetch Your Spade’. This track is hard rock on a blues centred album, but you can’t help feel that Dan is just as at home with Pearl Jam as he is with Free. Here he unleashes some blistering, heavy riffs, but never fully detaching from blues. 

Only An Ocean again on the harder side, is a slow-burner laced with whiskey-soaked melancholy and soul. Like an innocent country song that’s been dragged through the wrong side of town. 

Dan’s guitar playing is like a piece of art, displayed on the undeniably huge canvas laid down by bassist Clint Falconer, drummer Andy Maritz and Theo Crous on keyboards and Feels Like Home is perfect for describing his style with this track. A story told through powerful, smoky vocals with hammering bass and down and dirty vibes. This is blues brought up to date and how it should be heard – sexy and unrestrained. 

Sounding like it’s from a different album, Windmills And The Sea is a quiet, reflective song. It starts with a sprinkling of guitar and soft vocals, then picks up a soft pace to create a subtle yet beautiful track, gliding into Madison Lane for the a nice acoustic conclusion. 

This album, fulfilling two always important expectations for this genre that are high-powered, emotive guitar work and clever, discerning song writing, leaves you wanting more. It’s quietly beautiful, gritty and raw, funky and soulful but always heartfelt.
Like most good things, it’s something for everyone. Don’t let a listen pass you by.

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