Noise Annoys: Tony Wright & David Lyttle go blues
IT'S Noise Annoys time again, and this week we've got the blues – the acoustic blues as played by VerseChorusVerse & David Lyttle, to be precise.
This pair of local musos have joined forces to record an album called Say & Do that combines VCV man Tony Wright on guitar and wailing with the drumming/percussion skills of Mr Lyttle to fine effect.
Regular readers will of course be familiar with the campfire punk folk specialist VerseChorusVerse: previously part of titanic post rock operators And So I Watch You From Afar, Tony has featured in this column many times over the past few years while establishing himself as one of the north's most distinguished solo singer-songwriters.
Hands up though – I couldn't swear that David Lyttle has ever featured here before, which seems like a definite oversight given that the Derry dancehead turned jazzy songwriter, recording artist and hat enthusiast is now on his third LP.
Nominated for a MOBO award earlier this year, Faces is well worth checking out, not least for the fact that it features guest flow from hip hop name Talib Kweli on a rather smooth groove called The Second Line amongst its rake of collaborations.
Anyway, Say & Do finds the pair coming together as a stripped back guitar and drums duo, for a collection of songs that combine folk, blues and a smidgen of jazz moodiness.
Recorded on just two mics in 14 hours worth of session time, the record has a nice 'raw and real' feel that pretty much puts you in the room with the players.
While lead off single No Window is a pleasingly catchy acoustic strummer that zips along in a style that will be familiar to fans of Mr Wright's early solo work, the cowboy shuffle of Seek & Ye Shall Find Blues finds him trying on a bluesman croon for size.
It fits surprisingly well, softening up listeners for an even more remarkable vocal work-out on the languid Have Some Soul, which find the singer combining his usual mellifluous singing voice with a remarkable goblin-like gutteral croak he's pulled up from somewhere deep down below that makes him sound like an 80-year-old swamp dweller.
It's kind of scary, to be honest – but in a good way. More singers should have the guts to push their voices in different directions whenever it would serve the song at hand.
Mr Lyttle abandons his kit to add a little Fender Rhodes mood to the late night lament Everybody Else, one of the stand-out numbers here, and he brings hand-played percussion to bear on the album's excellent final track, the clap-along friendly Yet To Break, which ends the record on a defiantly upbeat note.
That one's definitely a keeper – however, my favourite tune on the album is probably Sudden Song.
This lovingly folksy ode to Derry's abundance of craic and charm should be adopted by the tourist board immediately, who might also consider adopting its memorable refrain of "laugh, drink, dance and kiss all night long" as an official slogan for the so-called 'second city'.
By now you'll probably be wanting to hear Say & Do for yourselves. Well, be advised that you will be able to get hold of this digital release from next Friday November 20 via David Lyttle's own label Lyterecords.com.
And, should also you wish to see and hear what they sound like live, Tony and David will be playing in Derry that very evening at Bennigans.
Be there – and don't forget to laugh, drink, dance and kiss all night long while you're at it.
Lastly, in other non-local yet equally awesome music news, incredible Nashville duo Jeff The Brotherhood have today unleashed a brand new double album of psychedelic rock goodness called Global Chakra Rhythms.
This limited edition release finds the brothers Orrall getting trippy with a set of jammy, droney rock, including a truly massive re-working of Mazzy Star's Mary of Silence.
Turn on, tune in and drop out right now at Soundcloud.com/infinity-cat.