Friday, November 13, 2009

Brendan Benson goes retro

People always focus on Jack White in The Raconteurs, but I've always had a soft spot for Brendan Benson - whose Byrdsian melodic tendencies drag the White Stripes mainstay closer to pop than he usually dares tread.

With Jack off (fnar) doing his Dead Weather thing, Benson has finally got round to releasing the album he recorded in between Broken Boy Soldiers and Consolers Of The Lonely. It's a cosy little guitar-pop gem, calling to mind the AM radio rock of ELO and Wings. In other words, it's music you can sing along to AND feel masculine about because of the massive penis axe slung round your shoulders.

The latest single is A Whole Lot Better, for which Mr Benson has dug out an old ATV video mixer and pressed all the buttons at once. Expect kaleidoscopes, strobing, ghostly dissolves, weird colour saturation and unnecessary split screen effects. Like the song, it's utterly charming.

PS: Is it just me, or does Brendan Benson look incredibly similar to Julian Rhind-Tutt out of Green Wing?

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