Saturday, 24 September 2011
Idaho - You Were A Dick (idahomusic.com)
It appears that Idaho is now just one man, Jeff Martin, and this lousily titled album is a gift from him to you and me, though the title is just about the only thing wrong here, so don’t let it put you off. Effortlessly listenable, these 14 short(ish) tracks all have time to be nurtured, grow to a pleasing and genteel climax, and then gently curl up and sleep until the next time you play them. I suppose it is what we should expect from an Idaho album, it’s exactly what they’ve delivered on all their previous records since “Year After Year” back in 1993. Eighteen years after their debut, and six years since their last record, Martin has now pulled out his thumb and produced this peachy set of tunes that meander and flow so peacefully, and gorgeously.
I guess you might have to be a fan already, though, who knows? Maybe a whole new set of fans has been waiting just for this album. Somehow I don't think so, despite the wondrous mood of entrancing melancholia that pervades throughout “You Were A Dick” (well, actually, not quite, as "The Space Between", which occupies the album's mid-point, is unleashed with a spark that rapidly turns to flame, an outpouring of soul, a mini rock anthem. From Idaho... whooda thought it?). Back to the fan thing: Idaho have always been at the forefront of the slow, melancholic, contemplative sound, alongside bands like Red House Painters and their ilk, and they’ve never searched for an audience, it has always found them. These days, for many new music listeners, that’s just too much trouble, and it’s a shame. How much they miss out on, eh?
So, another album of introspective brilliance from Idaho, then, and if you think you don't need it then please think again. This is as necessary as any drug; it won't harm you... and its legal.