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coverpic flag Australia - Full Moon 95 - 07/02/04

The Tulips
In The Honeycone
Belmore Records

Very excited to hear about this release, which follows last year's much sought-after debut EP. Wonderful Plums and Deadstar songwriter/vocalist Caroline Kennedy and guitarist Peter McCracken provide the bulk of the spare backing, complemented across most of the album by pedal steel, piano and drums.

Kennedy is a strong and at times unconventional songwriter/performer, best evidenced on the fantastic Gun album from 1994 by The Plums. Her sweet voice is often counterbalanced against lyrics of heartache, breakdown and loss, giving you plenty with which to ponder on In The Honeycone.

The longing of "Hard to Love" with its floating pedal steel and dreamy ending could've been an (extremely late!) inclusion on After the Gold Rush, while "Rock n Roll's Mine" with its assertions of love is quite simply affecting. Despite her long term involvement in the scene, Kennedy continues to evolve whilst retaining a charming wide-eyed innocence, captured best on the last song "Come Right Home To Me".

Though the light has faded on The Plums and the skating-on-the-edge-of-commercial-acceptance Deadstar, The Tulips sound comfortable inside their skin on this release. The sort of homespun acoustic train they're currently riding is simply beautiful, Gillian Welch & David Rawlings shot through with a genuinely quaint pop sensibility not unlike The Sundays at their most sublime.

Repeated spins of the album only bring more love ..maybe it's just the approach of a cold winter. In The Honeycone provides the warm welcoming arms for which I'm a-yearning, wrap yours round The Tulips and savour the warmth.

Copyright © 2004 Brian Stradbrook e-mail address

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