Codeine Velvet Club

Codeine Velvet Club

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Codeine Velvet Club may have started out via ideas shared over e-mail, but you'd never know it from the duo's self-titled album. The project of Scottish cabaret singer Lou Hickey, who performs at one of the U.K.'s biggest burlesque clubs, and Fratellis frontman Jon Lawler, the pair delves into glamour and decadence that are miles from Lawler's main project. Hickey is

Overview

Codeine Velvet Club may have started out via ideas shared over e-mail, but you'd never know it from the duo's self-titled album. The project of Scottish cabaret singer Lou Hickey, who performs at one of the U.K.'s biggest burlesque clubs, and Fratellis frontman Jon Lawler, the pair delves into glamour and decadence that are miles from Lawler's main project. Hickey is in her element on these songs, but Lawler sounds particularly renewed by this working holiday away from the Fratellis' hedonistic rock. While making the album, the duo recruited an orchestra, a gospel choir, Belle & Sebastian's Mick Cooke to write the orchestral arrangements, and trumpeter Derek Watkins, who has played on every James Bond theme song from the '60s to the 2000s. Despite the project's grand scale, Lawler's pop instincts are just as sharp as ever, particularly on the appealingly seedy "Vanity Kills," one of Codeine Velvet Club's many knowing rants against glamour (even as the duo revels in it). Despite Hickey and Lawler's Scottish roots, America's dens of iniquity are a major influence on them, whether it's the tension between Tinseltown's old-school elegance and new-school sleaze on "Hollywood," which they celebrate with a Phil Spector-esque Wall of Sound and sinister lyrics, or "Nevada," which sings the praises of Las Vegas' fools' gold allure with lavish swirls of strings. The band does nod to Lawler's rock roots every once in a while, but only briefly: "Little Sister" starts out with Fratellis-like brashness before segueing into the kind of hot jazz that was last heard in a speakeasy. However, Codeine Velvet Club still sounds most special when the pair pours on the drama, as on "The Black Roses," which glitters with spy theme suaveness, and "Reste Avec Moi," a lovelorn duet with a melody so familiar, you'd swear you've heard it before. The album's only drawback -- and it's a slight one -- is that Lawler and Hickey seem so eager to fill up every inch of their songs with sounds that they forget that silence can be just as dramatic, if not more so. Nevertheless, Codeine Velvet Club is a witty debut that suggests the potential for more.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/06/2010
Label:
Dangerbird
UPC:
0842803003129
catalogNumber:
41
Rank:
78348

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Codeine Velvet Club   Primary Artist
Derek Watkins   Trumpet
Ross McFarlane   Drums
Rick Wentworth   Conductor
Mick Cooke   Trumpet
Ed McFarlane   Double Bass
Allan Cuthbertson   Piano
Mark Nightingales   Trombone
Lou Hickey   Vocals
Jon Lawler   Bass,Guitar,Vocals
Helen MacLeod   Harp
Gospel Truth Choir   Choir, Chorus
Affy Ahmad   Drums

Technical Credits

Mick Cooke   Orchestral Arrangements
Stuart McCredie   Producer,Engineer
Lucy Whalley   Assistant Contractor
Allan Cuthbertson   Engineer
M. Grant   Logo,Web Design
Niall McMenamin   Engineer
Jon Lawler   Producer

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Codeine Velvet Club 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago