Molland; Joey: Demos Old And New
Hot on the heels of Gonzo Multimedia releasing Return To Memphis, the new album from one time Badfinger member Joey Molland, comes Demos Old And New (and the album This Way Up – see review elsewhere).
Originally released as far back as 1998 under the name Basil, Demos... is exactly what it says on the tin, recordings from separate sessions brought together (although, annoyingly not chronologically) into one seventeen song set. And demo fare this truly is, nine of the songs being Molland alone working up ideas at home from any time between 1972 and 1988. There are also a number of full and part band demos, yet some of these too are of the fuzzy tape-hiss variety, often being a challenge to get through; although some are to a decent sonic standard. However mixing the sessions up in the running order means that the quality of recordings varies wildly from song to song, making it difficult to tune the ears into the sounds created. That said, the two tracks from 1995, "Isn't That A Dream" and "Mirrors", including Bob Millea (drums), Tom Lecher (bass), Harry Pulver (Keys) and Randy Anderson (guitar), are almost full release quality, both shining through a smooth yet lived in American Rock vibe ala Jackson Browne or Bruce Springsteen. "Clouds Of Love", from the home demos, has an undoubted charm, "Birdsong" also possesses a gritty growl that captures the imagination, while "Miss Misunderstood" thrives through its sparse acoustic guitar and vocal approach.
However with much of ...Old And New genuinely falling into "personal reference" territory, most of what's on offer here is going to struggle to appeal to anyone other than Molland, and possibly, Badfinger aficionados, and there's a good chance they'll have the 1998 version of this album already. Add to that a booklet which doesn't contain any great detail about the recording sessions, the songs, or indeed the man himself, and there really isn't much to hook in casual fans of Molland at all.
One for fans only and at that, fans who didn't pick up on Basil first time round.
1. I Said It's Alright '92
2. Borderline '84
3. Birdsong '92
4. Cadillac Blues '88
5. Can't Stop '84
6. Clouds of Love '80
7. Isn't That A Dream '95
8. It's True '88
9. Mirrors '95
10. Miss Misunderstood '72
12. Panning Gold '82
14. Walkin' The Floor '83
15. What You're Doin '73
16. When '80
17. Miss Misunderstood
Added: December 27th 2014
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Demos Old And New at Gonzo MultiMedia
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