CDs SENT TO HALF A COW

August 2008

BENJAMIN SHAW three songs

myspace . Benjamin Shaw
email: benjaminjesseshaw@gmail.com

I would usually call this end-of-the-bed music as it sounds like the singer doesn't want to wake the neighbours or let his flatmates know what he/she is singing about. But this three tracker from Benjamin Shaw had a few more surprises tucked away than I first thought.

Generally these bedsit bards fly the 'woe is me' flag and after reading Benjamin's bio that came with the cd, he seems to relish it. Take these examples: "After a period of particular awfulness, and a short descent into madness... Ben has recently been seen playing all the main dives you've never heard of..." and here's the best one: "...with all the agility you would expect from a gangly, pale washing line of a man, Benjamin Shaw is coming at you like a wet duffle-coat."

What a great description! A wet duffle coat. But come on, Mr Shaw, don't be too hard on yourself - you're not that wet. In fact, the three songs here tell otherwise. I can't see the comparison to Elliot Smith and Nick Drake as mentioned in his bio. Haven't heard much Elliot Smith but to my ears you're as good as Bill Smog and that Palace Brothers guy.

'Twisting turning killing learning' has the hushed tones you would be expecting but then he breaks out - in a loud voice! - and sings something about listening to a Dr Hook record. How cool is that? This song has a lovely and memorable melody and haunting piano and brushed drums.

'When I fell over in the city' starts out with hi-tech looped hi-hats panning from left to right before going all boxy old tambourine on us and then singing in an English accent about vit-a-mins (pronouncing the vit like hit). What's going on here? Now I listened to this before I read Ben's story, not knowing that he is actually an Englishman from Blackpool ("a town built on disappointment and despair") who moved to Melbourne for a short time and is now back in Blighty, based in London. Okay back to the song. So English is his real accent? With a bit of added Ray Davies syrup. It's a great song too, as he woos his lover with "there's a fine line between talented and me".

The final song 'Chocolate Girl' features a wonderful one-man choir that mixes in what sounds like a harmonica or accordion or pump-organ. Who cares? It sounds great.

I would definitely love to hear more from this self-proclaimed wet duffle coat (love it!) Benjamin Shaw. -ND


other demos...
THE SOLOMONS - October 2009
DAVE SEASIDE - October 2009
AFXJIM - October 2009
THE MAGUS - September 2009
THE REFLECTORS - September 2009
HARVEY SWAGGER BAND - August 2009
BAMBINO KORESH - August 2009
KATE RAE - August 2009
UNTHINKABLES - July 2009
CABARET CALLADO - June 2009
THE SAGE EVOLUTION - April 2009
CAPITAL - March 2009
LINE DRAWINGS - March 2009
THE LIGHT BRIGADE - February 2009
GROTS VEGAS - February 2009
THE CHELSEA DRUGSTORE - February 2009
LIONEL LEE - January 2009
MAGIC ROB - December 2008
PETER STEIN - November 2008
LARMO CUSACK - November 2008
PAUL DAVIES - November 2008
PORTAL WINDOW - November 2008
THE ISLE OF MAN - October 2008
NELL WEBBER - October 2008
THE CHARLES MANSON EXPERIMENT - October 2008
THE BATASCOUTS - September 2008
KENT EASTWOOD - September 2008
LOLA FLASH - August 2008
BENJAMIN SHAW - August 2008
BAMBINO KORESH - July 2008
THE LEED FIENDS - July 2008
THE WELLS - June 2008
KATE BRADLEY & the Goodbye Horses - June 2008
WE GROW UP - May 2008
THE LOVE EXPLOSION - December 2007
LINDSAY PHILLIPS - November 2007
It’s a tie! IGOR ALEINIK + MAXIM BATOV - October 2007
RYAN STERLING - September 2007
EVA POPOV - August 2007
TEMPO DE NAUGHTY - June 2007
CLAUDIA WOODS - April 2007
ARON ATTWOOD - March 2007
THE SIESTAS - February 2007
IVONA - January 2007
THE STICKS - December 2006
ELLE SKIES - November 2006
THE FLYING COLOURS - November 2006
ARTICHOKE HEART SOUFFLÉ - September 2006
ANDREW KEESE & THE ASSOCIATES - July 2006
LUCY LEHMANN - May 2006
LUKE RUSSELL - April 2006
Where Are They Now? - April 2006
RUNNING WITH HORSES - March 2006
WINDOW - January 2006
PIP SMITH AND RED STAR - January 2006
PAPER PLANES - December 2005
SHOOT THE GENIE - November 2005
The Magus - November 2005
The Codebreakers - October 2005
Khancoban - September 2005
Stuart McGuane - August 2005
She'll 'B' Apples - July 2005
The Wellingtons - July 2005
Sugarhit - July 2005
The New Black - June 2005
BeOmega - June 2005
Old Nick - May 2005
The Triangles - May 2005
Jon Duncan - December 2004
The Honeyriders - December 2004
Larry Parkinson - December 2004
Stress Of Leisure - December 2004
The Cliffy Davis Goodtime Band - November 2004
it's a tie! Lyceum and Wade Jackson - November 2004
Arty Del Rio - November 2004
Amundsens Flag - November 2004
Mark Taylor - September 2004
Remington super 60 - July 2004
the MP3's - July 2004
Cycle Of Fifths - July 2004
Follow The Vann - June 2004
The Avenues - June 2004
Wons Phreely - June 2004
Halfway - June 2004
The Jennys - May 2004
Diana - May 2004
Wont - May 2004

 

 

Half A Cow
Half A Cow Records
PO Box 1100 STRAWBERRY HILLS NSW 2012 Australia
Email: haclabel@mpx.com.au
Phone: +61-2-9705 7014
ABN 93 300 971 980