Tuesday, July 29, 2008
CD Review: Cakehole Presley - Cakehole Presley EP
Cakehole Presley – Cakehole Presley EP
2007, Christopher Ridgeway
Cardiff, Wales is the home base of the unusually named band Cakehole Presley. Chris Ridgeway (vox, guitar, harmonica), Marke Huphres (bass, vocals), Al McLean (guitar) and Alka Jones (drums) make up this dreamy little folk-rock outfit. Starting from influences such as The Beatles and Woody Guthrie, Cakehole Presley craft songs full of the ugly bumps of life, and ultimately find a way to illuminate their beauty. Their self-titled debut EP, Cakehole Presley, is a journey into the real world as seen from the corner stool in your neighborhood pub. The results are sublime.
Cakehole Presley delivers a mellow folk-rock sound that is comfortable and fun to listen to. The EP opens with Skipping Clouds, a stripped down daydream of song that settles over you like a warm summer breeze. Gotta Know Your Name is the ultimate song of romantic fascination (I've got to know your name because I love your face / My how you brighten up this place). There's a Dylan-esque feel to this one that is only partly the harmonica. This is the sort of song that should appear in a romantic comedy about a chance meeting between the inevitable romantic couple.
Borrowed Time takes a little darker turn. I heard it as the musing of a sorrowful stranger at the pub down the road who wants to tell you his sad stories over a pint. It's actually quite a brilliant song. Me & You is a rueful tune that has a bit of a Traveling Wilburies feel to it. Sweet Dreams (Little Darlings) is a bit of a of a humanistic drinker's prayer, and could be sung by the blokes at the bar on a Saturday night after the young and glamorous have departed. The closer, Small Ideas, may be one of the most simple and gorgeous pop/folk songs you'll come across. Small Ideas is worth the cost of the disc, even if you don't like the rest. But you will.
There's a rueful sorrow that runs throughout Cakehole Presley's self-titled EP that is matched only by the sense of hope against hope. It's anachronistic and contradictory and flawed and ultimately beautiful, just like life. This innocent EP sits at the junction where music becomes art becomes life becomes music once again, all in twenty-six minutes. After hearing the debut EP I find myself incredibly impatient to hear what comes next. You will be too.
Rating: 5 Stars (Out of 5)
You can learn more about Cakehole Presley at www.myspace.com/cakeholepresley. You can purchase a copy of the Cakehole Presley EP at www.cdbaby.com/cd/cakeholerepsley.