Just a few days ago I was raving about Davey Craddock’s single “Peaceful Bay.” I really enjoyed this mellow folk-tinged number, and couldn’t wait to learn more about him on the album’s release. On hearing City West, I’m hooked.
When you hear a single, you’re given just a glimpse of what an artist can do. I knew Davey was an impressive songwriter and that he knew he had a beautiful soft side, but I didn’t really get a picture of who he was. I certainly didn’t expect the attitude and grit of this record, reminiscent of the stuff Ryan Adams produced in his heyday with its easy blend of country and folk influences. And then there’s the joy of discovering tunes featuring some of my favourite instruments, like harmonicas and slide guitars.
Often when I hear an album it becomes clear why the lead single is the single. It usually stands above the other tracks, separating itself with its heart or catchy melodies. But that’s not the case here. In fact, I found myself more captivated by other numbers, like the raucous “Three Sprays” and the plaintive “Number 9.” My favourite track is undoubtedly the gospel-tinged “There Will Be Light,” with its depiction of suburbia and its trappings. “Ayers Rock” is another delight, a gentle and poignant closer.
I liked Davey Craddock’s single, but on hearing his album I discovered there was so much more to him than I’d first realised. You’ll struggle to find better songs than the ones he’s composed here and the passion with which he delivers them is compelling. It might be only January, but I’ll be surprised if an album speaks to me more this year.
City West is released on 5 February. He’ll support its release with the following shows.
26 February 2016 – Major Toms, Kyneton
27 February 2016 – Junkyard, Maitland (FREE)
28 February 2016 – Django Bar, Sydney
5-6 March 2016 – Nannup Festival
12 March 2016 – RADA Studios, Perth
15-17 April 2016 – Fairbridge Festival, Fairbridge Village
29 April – 1 May 2016 – Mount Beauty Festival, Mount Beauty
Image used with permission from Thrillhill Music