Dan Wilson - All Love Is Blind
Cubical frontman Dan Wilson finally releases his first solo album. It's a major musical departure from his previous work, with a more introspective and lyrically orientated sound in the classic alt folk tradition of Leonard Cohen, Johnny Cash, Nick Cave and Nick Lowe. Drawing on the musical talents of producers Kal Ross and long-time Cubical producer Keith Thompson, All Love is Blind walks the fine line between the raw and the refined. This mixture of genres that blend folk, old blues and country along with a little rock n roll, all serve as wonderful settings for Wilson's debut . The album utilises the evocative and purifying sound of cello and violin to create a perfect backdrop in which Wilson's voice and lyrical prowess can feature. Title track "All Love is Blind" is a rich absorbing ode to the futility of love in which the fine production work of Kal Ross comes to the fore, with an intricate use of backing vocals and percussion that work in unison with the strings and Wilson's vocal to tug at the heart strings. 'The Waves' on the other hand is a rumbling whirl of intense brooding and rhythmic convulsion that speaks of a dark world of judgment and is hurried along by the frenetic violin of Rod Leung and the primordial percussion of Cubical rhythmical stalwart Mark Percy. Add to this the backing vocals of Laura Campbell (Mulu / Legends of Flight) and the fine production work of Keith Thompson and what results is a cacophonous track of raw and spellbinding power. 'Lonely Drunk' is a boozy country folk ballad well versed in the tradition of late night crooning and tears in one's beer. The double bass and then trombone solo of musical genius and theatre composer Andy Frizzell (Wizards of Twiddly) is worth the fee alone and works wonders with Randy Newman and Nick Lowe -esque lyrical introspection that verges on the ridiculous. '5 Nights Long' is raw Wilson, in Cubical mode, beset with jealousy and growling. This rough and ready blues stomp is driven by the wonderful slide playing of Cubical lead guitarist Alex Gavaghan. The penultimate track on the album 'Where Did All The Love Go?' is a lullaby best enjoyed with a late night whisky, a gentle and tender piece that mixes the fragile vocal and acoustic guitar of Wilson with the luscious and sorrowful tones of Siofra Ward's cello. A wonderful way to end such an absorbing journey. More than simply a break up album this is more like a get back together and then break up again album. Try saying that after you've had a few.