Sunday, February 19, 2006

Steve Gilmore Reviews: Deggsy/Crockmister - The Girl With Half Opened Arms

Artist: Deggsy/Crockmister
Title: The Girl With Half Opened Arms

Now that Deggsy and Crockmister have moved over to Soundclick I hope that they get more of the attention they actually deserve. After all, I have been giving them rave reviews throughout last years and I know they gained some fans from here, but IMHO they deserve so much more. As I've written before they came within a whisker of gaining my (obviously disreputable) Artist Of The Year 2005 award in last years Stevies. That isn't because I like their music because to be honest, they are a bit too middle of the road for me, ya know what I mean. I DO like their musical style and the obvious professionalism that they bring to everything they have ever produced, a talent that gained them four Must Have's pretty much in a row. Don't believe me? OK, listen to Spinning Around (August 2005), Tired Of being Poor (September 2005) and These Dreams of Mine (October 2005) and the absolutely immaculate Lullaby In Blue (January 2006) and then tell me that I am wrong about this...

Yeah sure, they have a pop sensibility bordering on the 'easy listening' side (think Simply Red, Lionel Ritchie and - on Lullaby In Blue - Louis Armstrong) but the class of work here is incomparable. Simply put, there is no one around that is better at this kind of material than this UK based duo. I'm not alone in thinking this because I am aware that the MP3 Unsigned artists don't get THAT much attention from SC regulars but this artist certainly did. Even the most casual listen to this track (Girl With Half Opened Arms) will point up everything I have just explained. Certainly the professionalism I mentioned would be immediately to the fore, this is something that could have come from any commercial funk (Commodores?) outfit you care to name. It's easy, jazzy style will suck you right in, believe me.

As much as I like Deggsy's musical nous (and he knows I do) the real star of this act just has to be Craig Sofaly (aka Crockmister) who has a voice that can stretch out into some really amazing places. There's a classic sound to his vocals that makes you feel very familiar with it, even if you've never heard him before. It's a clever amalgam of just about every class singer over the past thirty or forty years (remember the Louis Armstrong reference?, I kid you not...) and believe me, that's a hard trick to pass off. Out of the three names in the bag for AOTY 2005, Marian Daines and Paul Killington and Sylvan and Bonamici, pipped them at the post and I couldn't give these guys a higher compliment. The reason I rate ALL three of these artists so highly is because they are simply one-of-a-kind, streets ahead of any competition - but out of them all, none is MORE commercial than Deggsy and Crockmister. Take a listen to any of the tracks I have mentioned and you will see that.

(sigh) Must Have (sigh) again.... yaaawnnn ;)

1 comment:

Deggsy said...

Wow...Not another Must HAVE.........

Steve.... I think Craig will be well Chuffed with what you have said..You are spot on with your comments ..he has a great voice and Without his Talent and Excellent vocals and superb Lyrics ,Ive said this before we wouldn't be where we are now thats for sure..and of course your Excellent Reviews which you have made us Stand out....With all these Must Have's in a row which as you have said Many a time is very rare from an Excellent artist and reviewer which i thank you for ..Top man

Cheers Steve