• kevin tihista's red terror On This Dark Street (CD, £10.25)

    label: Broken Horse

    Itís been a while... 2005 in fact was the last time the world heard from Kevin Tihista with 'Home Demons Vol 1' (a collection of bedroom recordings and studio out-takes) that was almost as well received as the previous yearís 'Wake Up Captain'. Through those years Kevin never stopped writing and recording, endlessly adding to his epic song pile that he only began at the age of 30 but for a variety of reasons including financial hardship, parting with his US label Parasol, personal ups and downs, aborted studio recordings as well as a hefty dose of indecision - an album was not forthcoming. This all changed in the summer of 2011 when Kevin sent his UK label Broken Horse a new song, 'In Dreams', and a plan was hatched to reunite him with his producer Ellis Clark who had produced his first three albums. With an embarrassment of riches of songs to record but only a finite and limited budget to play with, a plan was hatched to concentrate on the more sombre songs that he had written over the last few years. The pop songs he had up his other sleeve would largely have to wait their turn. Recorded quickly, over a 5-6 week period, in intense 2-3 day sessions in the studio, 'On This Dark Street' may prove to be Kevinís finest work to date. Gloriously bleak, deliciously dark and with his trademark gallows humour firmly in place, itís hard to imagine a more affecting album will be released in 2012. Kevin Tihista has probably heard of the likes of Bill Callahan and Mark Eitzel but I very much doubt heís heard their music. 'On This Dark Street' finds him camping on their lawn. Kicking off with ĎTaking It To The Streets (Again)í, Tihista references heartbreak, murder, manslaughter, Bob Dylan, Jack Kerouac, The Beatles, drinking, drugging and falling off too many tables and more heartbreak, to devastating effect. Not until the closing 'Country Road' does he finally turn on the lights with a pop standard you would swear youíve known all your life. The closing line of the album ďEverything will be OKĒ, shining a light at the end of this particularly dark tunnel. A follow up to 'On This Dark Street' is already mostly written and partially recorded, according to the man himself, ďThe plan is to make it sound like a greatest hits, each song better than the last. I think Iíve got the songs and Iím writing like crazy, so letís see.Ē Tracklisting: 1. Taking It To The Streets (Again) 2. Bats 3. Jack K 4. In Dreams 5. N.Carolina 6. Micky 7. Teenage Werewolf 8. Donít Let Him In 9. I Heard A Voice 10. Country Road

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