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# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Hobotalk - Homesick for Nowhere

  by John Clarkson

published: 24 / 7 / 2007

Hobotalk - Homesick for Nowhere
Label: Glitterhouse Records
Format: CD


Intimate third album of home recorded lo-fi folk from Hobotalk, the project of Scotish singer-songwriter Marc Pilley

'Homesick for Nowhere’ is the latest album of Hobotalk, the project of Marc Pilley, a Scottish singer-songwriter and home recording experimentalist. It follows on from two previous albums which he has recorded under the same moniker, 2000’s ‘Beauty in Madness’, which appeared on the short list of nominations for the Mercury Music Prize in that year, and 2005’s ‘Notes on Sunset’. The twelve main tracks on ‘Homesick for Nowhere’ are interspersed with five brief instrumentals, none lasting much more than thirty seconds and, merging together abstract scufflings and ringings of sound, all of which are entitled ‘Homesick’. Much of the rest of ‘Homesick for Nowhere’ has a similar intimacy. The majority of the songs are based around Pilley’s tender acoustic guitar and pattering piano, and around this the other instruments come and go, a wheezing violin, a shimmering mandolin, occasional brushes of drums and a succession of female backing vocalists, who include the Walkabouts’ Carla Torgerson. The main instrument, however, is Pilley’s mellow voice. Like the American singer-songwriter Doug Hoekstra, he sings in a slightly whispered tone, a decibel or two below than what one might expect, forcing his listeners as a result to pay attention and then ensnaring them, in a series of songs most of which last little more than three minutes, with a quickfire succession of captivating lyrics. Many of the songs are about straggling relationships on the slide. The world weary ‘How It Is’ tells of an attraction of opposites which has become suffocating as both parties start to realize how just little they have in common. “We’re just how it is when it don’t make sense” croons Pilley, showing a neat ability to capture the root of a situation in a single sentence. The softly waltzing ‘Fallin for You Again‘ is meanwhile about a couple who have got back together, but who know that they will soon fall apart again.“Didn’t we say never again ?” Pilley sings over and over again, before adding, sounding as if his heart is going to snap, “”I’m fallin for you again/Knowin what I’ve always known/Is knowin that we won’t grow old together but apart.” It is not, however, all on one theme or even all melancholic. ‘These Times Sure Could Break Your Heart’ is a breezy Dylanesque rocker, with whooping backing vocals. ‘People Keep On’ is similarly political, throwing a warbling organ into its mix, and rousingly agitating people, whatever is thrown at them, to stand up for themselves and carry on. The surprisingly twee ‘Doesn’t Life Go On’ has Pilley shocking himself by finding renewed hope and meaning in life (“There’s times when I think there’s not much in livin/Then life brings a sunset that keeps on given.”), while ‘Life Looks Better (Looking at It Through You)’ is the most gentle-hearted of love songs. Marc Pilley has taken the lo-fi folk genre, and with ‘Homesick for Nowhere’ given it an anewed energy.

Track Listing:-
1 Homesick Pt. 1
2 These Times Sure Could Break Your Heart
3 How It Is
4 Dream On
5 Homesick Pt. 2
6 Settin Fire to Flame
7 Fallin for You Again
8 People Keep On
9 Homesick Pt. 3
10 Between the Graveyard and Your Door
11 Life Looks Better (Lookin at It Through You)
12 Doesn't Life Go On
13 Homesick Pt. 4
14 Me Myself
15 Today
16 Homesick Pt. 5
17 Don't Say Goodbye

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