# 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

Dodson and Fogg - Watching the World

  by Malcolm Carter

published: 21 / 9 / 2019

Dodson and Fogg - Watching the World
Label: Wisdom Twin Records
Format: CD


Leeds-based Chris Wade’s Dodson & Fogg project goes from strength to strength with another collection of outstanding songs from the multi-instrumentalist

It appears there’s no stopping Chris Wade. The Leeds based multi-instrumentalist/ author/artist/filmmaker released the debut Dodson & Fogg album back in 2012 and since then he’s created a body of work that few, if any, other artist can compete with. Not only has Wade kept up an extremely high standard throughout an amazing run of albums but the man also creates most of the sounds heard on his records. While Wade has employed the services of some very well known artists on a few of his previous releases, he wrote, played and produced the eleven songs on ‘Watching the World’ totally alone. For those familiar with Wade’s previous work then you’ll know what to expect; his own unique take on prog/ folk with a few bluesy touches thrown in for good measure. Oh, and his trademark excellent guitar playing that should be appreciated by many more than those who already know that Wade is, without a doubt, our most under-rated guitar player. For those yet to discover the magical musical world that Wade inhabits then I’m envious. I can still remember all those years ago hearing the first Dodson & Fogg album and being blown away by what I heard. At last an artist not afraid to push boundaries and creating something new and inspirational; there has not been a musician since who has left a mark as deep as the one Wade does on first hearing. In hindsight that first Dodson & Fogg album came fully formed with Wade’s unique sound. Subsequent albums have found Wade digging deeper, developing his sound and always offering up something new while never deserting his original vision. So,while it could be argued that ‘Watching the World’ could easily slot anywhere into Wade’s discography, it still sounds fresh and relevant. ‘Watching the World’ is a concept album of sorts, at least to these ears, and Wade must have surely had a theme set to run through this latest batch of songs. The, as usual, stunning cover art by Linzi Napier gives notice that this time Wade is going to be in Ray Davies mode lyrically. Astute observations of mundane everyday life are rife throughout the songs; Napier’s cat checking out life through a window could be any one of us but few are capable of articulating our thoughts as well as Wade does here. The comparison to Davies wasn’t made lightly but is well deserved. While we are in the habit of declaring every new Dodson & Fogg album the best that Wade has produced to date, this latest collection can lay claim to some of his best lyrics. Every Dodson & Fogg album is a journey; for this writer, for some still unfathomable reason Wade’s music takes me on a journey down a river, and the opening track reasonably titled ‘Opening’ does exactly that. If ever a song evoked nature then it’s this one. The sound of trickling water and bird song gently give way to one of the most beautiful tunes Wade has ever released. ‘Watching the World’ may well be Wade’s strongest set of songs lyrically but it’s his skill at creating such rich instrumentals as ‘Opening’ that Wade really shows his talent. He uses sound effects again to open the next song, ‘Take a Good Look Around Tonight’, this time not the sounds of nature but of city traffic and we are immediately in no doubt that this song is the work of Chris Wade. His laid-back, dreamy vocals are as affecting as usual and it’s the edgier side of Wade that informs this song that displays those blues leanings that emerge occasionally in his recordings. Another of Wade’s trademarks, searing guitar licks closing a song also makes an appearance here. And talking of his electric guitar playing the following track ‘Here and Now’ is early evidence of why this artist’s skill on the guitar is so highly regarded. The title track is classic acoustic Wade. A beautiful dreamscape of a song, the images this track evokes are so colourful and detailed. The song just makes you want to take time out for yourself and spend a few minutes immersed totally in Wade’s Wonderful World of Music. ‘You and I’ proves again that Wade can write summery pop tunes with substance; this particular cut even brought back memories of the Byrds. ‘Wonderful Girl’ also displays Wade’s pop leanings complete with his usual stunning guitar work. ‘The Shore’ (maybe forever associating Wade’s music with water isn’t so surprising after all) is another of his stunning instrumentals.,again taking the listener on a journey. Despite this album being lyrically strong, it’s these instrumentals that really talk to the listener simply because of the images they evoke; it’s another of Wade’s talents. The album comes full circle with the closing ‘Up All Night’. The album opens with the dawning of a new day and closes with the sound of crickets and waves lapping on the shore painting images of a day’s end. Again the song features some outstanding guitar work from Wade and the atmosphere created throughout the track is stunning. Just how much longer can Wade create albums of such beauty and still not receive the recognition he so richly deserves? ‘Watching the World’ is available at the Dodson & Fogg Bandcamp page for a ridiculously low price given the riches it contains or alternatively visit http://wisdomtwinsbooks.weebly.com where you can catch up on all of Wade’s activities. It is time well spent. Did I mention that ‘Watching the World’ is in the running for the best Dodson & Fogg album so far?

Track Listing:-
1 Opening
2 Take A Good Look Around Tonight
3 Here and Now
4 Watching the World
5 You And I
6 You're Nothing if You've Lost Yourself
7 All the Faces in the Street
8 Where you Roam
9 Wonderful Girl
10 The Shore
11 Up All Night

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Interview (2022)
Dodson and Fogg - Interview
Chris Wade speaks about his work as Dodson & Fogg, working with actors for his latest project, maintaining a breakneck work rate and why he’s putting the Dodson & Fogg name on hold
Interview (2021)
Interview (2016)
Interview (2014)
Interview (2014)
Interview (2012)


Movement In The Exterior World/Music For Strange and Mysterious Stories (2024)
Dodson and Fogg - Movement In The Exterior World/Music For Strange and Mysterious Stories
Malcolm Carter reflects on two new stunning albums from Chris Wade (aka Dodson and Fogg, which showcase all sides to his many talents.


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