Dan Melchior Loud Version LP

I think I’m turning into my dad. The man loved a lame high-concept cover album. JOE JACKSON jumpin’ and jivin’ through some swing tunes, RICKIE LEE JONES doing stuffy-nose jazz covers of kids songs, DREAD ZEPPELIN being an embarrassment to humanity—just absolutely his shit. I’d been subjected to so much of that kind of stuff growing up that when it dawned on me that this record was a collection of blown-out (“loud”) covers of MELCHIOR’s own back catalog (plus a couple of fresh covers), my eyes reflexively rolled right out of my head. But stripped of my sight, a heightened sense of hearing kicked in, and I think I came out really loving this record. The noisy production gives the taut, bare-bones numbers I loved from This is Not the Medway Sound (an under-appreciated record!) a fuller, looser vibe, while the relatively stripped-down versions of full-band tracks like “Hungry Ghost” really push MELCHIOR’s songwriting to the forefront. It’s kinda a shame that I don’t have any kids, because I can easily see myself foisting this on a car full of tweens who are neck-deep in Nintendo Switches or whatever and dad-splaining to them, “Now, DAN MELCHIOR has been making music for over twenty years, and on this record he’s playing louder versions of some of those older songs…,” and so on and so forth for the full 30-minute runtime of the album.