DAVEY CRADDOCK One Punch gets 9/10

Davey Craddock
One Punch
Independent

9/10

Davey Craddock tells stories. He immerses himself in life, surrounds himself with good folk and food (and a cute as a button pooch), all the while observing the world around him with a critical yet poetic eye. This emotion and experience is then garnered into song. One Punch is a record that has Craddock broadening his sound with the help of a bunch of well worn Perth musicians.

Craddock has always sounded like he has covered a lot of miles, and on this collection he continues that trend while gathering more dirt under his nails. Having spent time in the US during the presidential debates, Craddock was given fertile material to work with. On Not In My Backyard (You Said), Craddock addresses racism head on, with his first hint that his songs are going to be darker and messier this time around.

You can picture the drunk, disordered and displaced waiting at the taxi rank during One Punch, in what is an all too typical scene of toxic masculinity amongst the late night “angry boys”. The tune never gets out of second gear tempo wise, which only adds to its depth. Craddock has never been one to succumb to the power pop of the Perth waters before, yet he can’t deny his heritage on the jangle heavy Holiday. It is a song that would have been right at home on high rotation in the heyday of Triple J when Australian songwriters ruled the airwaves. It’s a new trick for Craddock, but it’s a fine one!

Father’s Day is more Mick Turner than Mick Thomas during this downbeat exploration of relationship and humanity. Not only has there been a shift in the songwriting for this outing, but Craddock is also showing a growing command of his voice. There is an honesty in Craddock’s storytelling that is instantly relatable without ever being overly earnest or contrived. Piano comes out for The Old Guys which finds Craddock with a heavy heart as he ponders the momentum of late nights and the weight of the modern world.

This version of Davey Craddock has his eyes wide open and doesn’t shy away from the ugliness that he sees. There are very few mention of cars and girls to sooth the blow. One Punch makes no apology and exceeds expectation.

CHRIS HAVERCROFT

 

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