Hear The Track HereMight as well start August off the same way as we have most months this year with Mr Eager Beaver himself, Thomas J Marchant. I think he is under the impression that having snagged my Artist Of The Year Award 2008, he's going to be on track for another one if he keeps me busy enough. The beauty, however, of the AOTY title is that it can only be held once so Thomas, wouldn't matter how many tracks you yakked at me. I'm only joking of course, like most of his long term fans, I can stand any amount of Thomas's musical tics and contortions. T'wasn't always so, of course, but Thomas has always been his own man and that often adds to a musicians appeal and definitely is a feature with Thomas (or his alter ego's of The Antennaheadz, Black Zarak and even the Men From San Diego)..
So many names, so many memories...
Second Hand isn't, I suspect, a track that Thomas J fans are going to be expecting. Certainly it's darker in tone than a lot of his recent material, but I personally like that. Again, too, Thomas's skills as a saxophonist make an appearance and that's never been a bad thing on any of his works. Thomas J doesn't just work outside the box, he works outside most peoples comfort zones too, and Second Hand will be one of those tracks you either love or hate. Having said that, I find myself in exactly the opposite direction, I love some of it, hate other bits and generally get a bit confused. Nothing new there then.
I have become used to Thomas's somewhat ramshackle production and - because of the quality of the songs he writes - mostly pass on the little fluffs and errors that dot his tracks. Afraid I can't in this case though, they be too damn glaring. Ah but this is Thomas J we are discussing right? Part of his broader appeal is that self same rough and ready approach and his willingness to experiment with it. While I like the tenor and tone of the track, the phasing of the vocals really grinds my gears, especially around the words 'you built your your house with a pack of lies' where is sounds - to be blunt - dreadfully unsure of itself. Moreover, the sax line is persistently out of tune, yet works in other places; enough to make you tear your hair out. Nonetheless, there will be enough for devotees to pick over for a while.
Recommended (and original) Alternative.