|Jesse Davey - 'A Soundtrack To The Movie That Wasn't There' (Credible Records)|
|Written by Andy P|
|Saturday, 14 July 2012 04:01|
I first heard Jesse Davey back in 1995, a friend of mine had migrated to the city of Bath to begin a degree in art. I, on the other hand, stayed put and pursued playing guitar in a band. And every few months I'd visit my friend. It was on such a sojourn to Bath that he told me of a band called The Hoax and their guitarist Jesse Davey. I heard a tape and, being a Stevie Ray Vaughan fan, immediately liked what I heard.
I never saw them live or heard more than the tracks my friend played me. And so that was that. Then maybe 10 years later when I got into computer animation I was Googling and YouTubing around for film making, animation tips I once again stumbled upon Jesse Davey in the form of a video called 'Making an Omelette'. OK so he's a great guitarist and he directs videos...oh good god...and he's got another band on the go - The Davey Brothers - and they're good.
Fast forward another 6 years to the present. So I'm minding my own business watching Mad Men and my brother calls on the phone. During the conversation he starts taking about a guitarist who designed these vintage fuzz pedals, pickups, tone switch and has also directed videos. He can't remember the name but I just know he's taking about Jesse Davey.
So I go online that night and find out that indeed it's Jesse and he's got an album out called 'A Soundtrack To The Movie That Wasn't There' I like the title, it reminds me of 'The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time'. So I preview three of the tracks......and buy the album immediately.
Now this is uncharacteristic of me. You see, when it comes to buying anything I'm a sloth. I pontificate, collect information, pontificate some more, wait some months, then just maybe I'll purchase. So with my sloth claws I pressed the buy it now button for the physical CD (yeah I'm a bit old fashioned that way). Though buying the CD also affords an album download as well, in a variety of formats. So while I wait for the tactile musical disc to arrive I have 12 downloaded tracks lined up in iTunes ready to consume.
Did I mention this is an instrumental album, probably not? Never mind, sit back because the main feature is about to begin. Cue opening track 'Earthling' a great statement of intent, which starts off proceedings with a wonderful brassy James Bond like swagger and a kinda "Na Na Na" infectious melody. Now that's a Güiro-tastic opening salvo.
A jazzy double bass starts the sinister beginning to 'We Rob Banks' with some subtle dissonant chords before giving way to a gear-change-chase-sequence guitar, it's like starting off in a beat poet jazz club, being chased down the street, hiding out, then being chased all over again.
Track three 'Jellyfish' has that Black Crowes 'Gone' vibe with a Leslie speaker/roto guitar and a honking organ riff. I love the repeated b5 lick at 1:12 and the trumpet at the end. 'Lost In the Bad Lands' has a George Harrison feel to me, lots of slide and double-stop subtleties like an elegiac piece for a journey .
Samuel L Jackson could walk down the street accompanied to 'Autokiller's' sublime groove and killer melody. It has a great syncopated feel which ends with some cool guitar lines. Über cool. A triptych of styles infuse 'If Only' like a melancholy zombie film theme meets The Beatles meets James Bond on the outro.
'Kessel Run' in this case is not an 18 parsec route used by smugglers it's a 4 minute organ/guitar question and answer groove. For some reason I could picture Tom Waits singing on 'Did You Bring The Gun' if it had vocals. It's like something out of a Sergio Leone Spaghetti Western.
'Bulldog' has that David Holmes/Ennio Morricone 12 bar vibe going on with some real tasty blues licks to boot, think Stevie Ray Vaughan and BB King. Then it's off to Russia for 'Mindless Me' with a conspiratorial feel, morphing into a wha-wha'd 70's-Huggy-Bear-groove with a Bowie era Stevie Ray Vaughan soloing with a hint of chromatic jazziness in the lead. As they say on the Fast Show's Jazz Club.......[looking at camera] N i c e.
'Nothing Ever Was' is a meditative 6/8 Dark Side of the Moon era Pink Floydy track full of Gilmouresque chord structural goodness. The main slide guitar reminds me of Sonny Landreth, the outro has a gorgeous fat Strat tone and the Major 3rd to 4th bend (5:00 & 5:31) is just inspired. And finally 'This Is How It Ends' - no guitars - just drums and piano as the titles roll on the album.
So 'A Soundtrack To The Movie That Wasn't There' is exactly like it says in the title. This isn't a guitar solo album full of debauched fretboard histrionics. It's a well crafted soundtrack, a musical narrative with each track conjuring up cinematic images and the restraint in the guitar department is to be applauded. This is an album made by a musician/composer who happens to play guitar. Think David Holmes or Ennio Morricone with some tasty blues lines and you won't be far off the mark, it hasn't been off my iTurntable since getting it. The sloth doesn't need to pontificate this one, it's a keeper. Now that's a wrap.
To pick up your copy of 'A Soundtrack To The Movie That Wasn't There' - CLICK HERE