And the sun shone down upon the turntable of love and it was, yeah and verily, the purple coloured vinyl of Bonnie Bishop that brought unto me a revelation. Not much of a revelation admittedly but in these inspirationally challenged days you have to be grateful for any crumb that you might get.
It often seems that the past is the new black in music with other people’s previous glories getting revived in the great battle against consumer indifference. Oh, the revelation. Why duplicate the past when you can be the past? Ms Bishop’s album “Free” could have just been delivered via a time machine into the here and now. Indeed it could. After all, she’s got that lived in voice, so often seen as the trademark of seventies female rock voice, that makes everything she sings sound real – not just to herself but to us too – and, on occasion, her band sounds like it has been enhanced by the ghost of Little Feat. Those comments, of course, do not belittle the ability of Ms Bishop to write an actual big boy rock song that always takes it to the bridge.
However, it’s a presentation thing too. Take the near addictive drawl that makes “Keep Using Me” so FM radio friendly. Or the pseudo Nashville bad girl gone sound that would surely have made Wynonna snap up “Bad Seed”. Even the rampantly sentimental “World Like This” escapes karaoke hell through the piano fuelled sincerity that Ms Bishop liberally injects into her performance.
So there you have it. Don’t reinvent someone else’s past. Instead be of the past and everything will work out just fine. I am also pretty damn sure that Bonnie Bishop wears boots all summer long too and that’s no bad thing in my book.