DIARY - 2 APRIL 2006 - BILL CHAMBERS CD REVIEW
FROZEN GROUND (ESSENCE-EMI)
prophetic that Bill Chambers kicks off his second solo disc with songs
that exploit weather metaphors to depict changes in the climate of
Death is the equaliser in Falling Like The Snow but Chambers
finds escape from a dominatrix in Chasing Rainbows.
"You think you've got me by the balls/ but there's a million
fractures in these walls."
Chambers also injects his ruptured romance requiems Ain't Your
Town No More and Poison Blood with vast vats of vitriol.
vixen who inspired "every song you sing rings a bell that only losers
ring" in the former where the mood swings with Michel Rose on pedal
steel and Bill on dobro, lap steel and slide guitar.
believe Grandpa Bill, 53, is a bitter bard - those songs benefit from
being at opposite ends of this powerful 12-track tableau.
Chambers also dips into joyous love, giving solace to a grief stricken
belle in Theresa, sweetened by Tim Wedde's accordion, and covers
the timely Johnny Cash classic Big River with Wedde's Flood band
mate Kevin Bennett sharing vocals.
And that heart beats loud and long on The Island where the singer's
character sings of his grief leaving his lover behind.
Equally poignant This Ain't Louisiana - a chance encounter with
a barmaid in a "one horse Queensland town" is the carnal conduit
to memories of a Storyville sweetheart.
Chambers broadens his bow with biblical eulogy The Stranger and
paternal love in finale Little Man.
He punctuates originals with Randy Newman's Rider In The Rain and
the Rowland Salley classic Killing The Blues.
Chambers probably didn't need the covers - his originals prove time enriched
rather than dimmed his talent on a disc challenging protégée
Catherine Britt for best local album of 2006.
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