According to his bio, Lindsay Phillips doesnít give a fuck about you. Thatís cool. And I wouldnít give two hoots about Lindsay Phillips except heís too damn good. His 5 tracker Aileen is an outstanding collection of dark folk songs from this lone man who preaches his sad tales accompanied only by his acoustic guitar and the occasional harmonica wail. The title track also includes some uncredited strings. Yum.
Itís his voice which got me in. This doesnít sound like some guy from Melbourne in his 20s?30s? (itís hard to tell how old Lindsay is from the pictures on the back of the sleeve). If I close my eyes, this affected croon takes me somewhere I have never been and suddenly Iím hovering above the smoky tables in some little folky dive in Greenwich Village in the mid-60s. This canít possibly be Lindsayís natural voice, but itís his chosen singing voice and itís incredible. Iíve tried to think of who exactly it reminded me of and I couldnít quite place it. Fred Neil was all I could come up with and thatís way off.
Lyrically, itís all about the dissatisfaction of life, like his bio says, and its images of dark things, both internally and externally. Itís like youíve found a heavy wooden door to a basement, slowly pushed it open and found a huge dusty leather-bound book that, once opened, teases you with pictures of Sweet Loneliness.
Being a fan of four track recordings, I am also very impressed with the recording of these songs. Minimalist in the instrumentation but the beautifully picked guitar melodies and the vocals out front in the mix make this collection a perfectly balanced set. I would love to hear more from this disillusioned fucker. -ND