Reviewed by CHARLIE REESE

DANIEL MADILL: BAKE A SNAKE EP

‘Bake A Snake’ is the second EP by Daniel Madill, following in the psychedelic folk footsteps of his first release ‘Diatom’.

In five tracks, all written, performed and produced by Madill, we are given a modern lo-fi retake on folk- and blues-based music.

Recorded using a retro 4-track tape method the singer/songwriter provides us with no-nonsense, sparse instrumentation stripped back to the essence of guitars and voice.

The EP opens with New England Drag, a track that makes up for anything it might lack in percussion instruments with a punchy, jaunty rhythm and chord progression that carries with it something oddly menacing – an air of something Cobain may have written for ‘Nevermind’ had he grown up in the bayou perhaps? Whether you find yourself in a city apartment or a porch in the swamplands, this track has the infectious ability to make you stomp a foot.

Use of layered vocals conjures up early 2000 freak folk artists like Devendra Banhart, another champion of lo-fi tape recorded releases.

Though these songs sit as more lyrically driven pieces, you’ll easily find yourself singing along to the charming country/folk melodies strewn amongst the track listings.

Dancing along with these melodies is Madill’s use of an electric guitar that, without taking anything away from the songs, floats about the acoustic guitar and vocals and provides another dimension to the music.

‘Bake A Snake’ is a testament to the fact that sometimes over-polishing, over-producing and throwing in a marching band of instruments isn’t the answer.

Everything that glitters is not gold. Sometimes all you need is a bit of honesty and history in the form of a 4-track tape recorder.

 - NZ Musician 27/10/2017  https://nzmusician.co.nz/music/daniel-madill/