Sunday, 2 February 2014

Luke Elliot - Benny's A Bum

Single review by

Hailing from New Jersey, singer-songwriter Luke Elliot initially recorded this song for the film of the same name which won the 2012 Philadelphia Independent Film Festival, so you could perhaps expect something a little cinematic, although that's not quite Elliot's style. After releasing a debut EP in 2010, another EP, 'Provisions', is set for release in May this year with 'Benny's A Bum' being the first single. If you missed the EP and have yet to hear the man's music, then you can expect this to appeal to fans of Tom Waits, Nick Cave and others who deal in gritty, experimental alt-rock; however, there is a slightly more delicate undertone to this song that may also fit with less dark songsmiths (both Rufus Wainwright and Elliot Smith have been used as comparisons).

This track has the kind of iron-throated delivery that yields real passion and feeling, and may be the result of the fact that Elliot is often pictured with a cigarette in his hand (call it whiskey-soaked as well if you want other clichés). This stuttering number is driven by piano and walks a weighty path with a few coarse guitar licks added for extra power. Lyrically we hear about caskets and graves; it's not a light-hearted track by any stretch of the imagination, but it captures a feeling perfectly, and that will have been the goal. If you were to hear Grinderman or Mark Lanegan cover this song and were told it was an original then you'd have no reason to doubt it. On the strength of this, Luke Elliot deserves to be mentioned in those kind of circles.

Luke Elliot's website

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