Album: Scott Walker
The Drift, 4AD
Friday 05 May 2006
Demur from the current acclaim for Scott Walker, and people assume that his "challenging" music is the reason for your dislike. Not so: I've a well-developed taste for the avant-garde and enjoy some of the soundscapes he has devised for The Drift. Their sculptural, architectural manner, with big, menacing blocks of sound - keening violins, braying donkeys, wind-machines, footsteps - crashing into one another, separated here and there by gaps of silence or industrial humming, has a grace and solidity that's strangely appealing in its self-confidence. No, it's Walker's voice I can't abide, that sombre baritone with its air of lofty condescension and its bleak, repetitive delivery of seemingly random non sequiturs: "and the jigger raps pits"; "I'll punch a donkey in the streets of Galway"; "six feet of foetus flung at sparrows in the sky".
For all their quixotic intrigue, and Walker's oblique approach to such ghostly subjects as Elvis Presley's stillborn twin and Mussolini's doomed lover, nothing on The Drift is quite as startling as the impression of Donald Duck that concludes "The Escape". Maybe, despite all the apparent melancholia, Scott's having a little chuckle to himself.
DOWNLOAD THIS: 'Cossacks Are', 'Hand Me Ups', 'The Escape'
Bannatyne leaves Dragon's DenTV
They're back, they're big – and they're still spectacularly boringfilm
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Howard Jacobson: Let's see the 'criticism' of Israel for what it really is
- 2 Gingers face extinction due to climate change, scientists warn
- 3 Brazil vs Germany World Cup 2014: In defence of Mesut Ozil - the Arsenal midfielder works magic in the shadows
- 4 Pornhub pleads with users to stop uploading videos of Brazil 'getting f**ked by Germany' in World Cup match
- 5 Give childhood back to children: if we want our offspring to have happy, productive and moral lives, we must allow more time for play, not less
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
British jihadist calls for 'flag of Islam' over Downing Street and Buckingham Palace
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
There’s a nasty smell in the political air – and it’s coming from the Tories