Scene and Heard – CCCLXXXIV :  Stereo Multiplex –  My Cousin Dallas (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

Keep Hope AliveA hero of mine, the illustrious, DJ, legend and all round saviour of music, Mr John Peel was once asked, around the time of the onset of CD’s, why he liked vinyl records so much when most seem to have so many pops and scratches that mar the enjoyment. His reply was that life comes with pops and scratches and I think as an answer it is pretty near perfect. It’s a sentiment that My Cousin Dallas echo brilliantly on Stereo Multiplex. This anthem to old vinyl records and crackling AM radio stations, to the age of musical innocence and festivals and to the simple act of playing live music feels like the most natural statement in the world but you have to consider the world that we are moving into.

To people of a certain age this track might seem like a nostalgia trip but to a younger crowd it might also be a timely warning not to give up those basic pleasures. I have nothing agains the march of technology, it shapes and makes good music but the balance has to lie somewhere nearer man than machine. All Stereo Multiplex is gently saying is when all your music is so technologically reliant that live shows are basically karaoke, when music has no physical presence, that it is just transient digital information, when music venues have become hipster coffee bars serving MoccaCoccaFrappaChappaLinos out of a shoe, when there are only stadium shows and tickets cost a month’s wages, maybe then you will look back to the simple pleasures being promoted here.

Everyone has to make their own mistakes and when they do, when they remember the warnings that they failed to heed, when they finally find their way back home, songs like this will be there to say welcome back, grab a beer, do you want to hear a cool album?

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