Album Review: Bedouin of the Fitzroy Evening by Lonely Stretch (2019) (self released)

 

Lonely Stretch is the ‘side project’ of The Dunes front man, Matt Reiner. Although the usage of such a term is perhaps discounting the sheer brilliance of this release, for both lyrically and musically this album, upon repeated listens, reveals ever increasing elevations and layers that force the reader to keep chancing upon new interpretations.

From a musical perspective this Adelaide based 4/5 piece smooches effortlessly between the humid, marginally dark, psych inflections of tracks like single Bedouin of The Fitzroy Evening (see above), Crystallise and After The Fires and the more vibrant, obviously jangled distractions of the beautiful Somewhere ElseThe Rolling Hills of Callington, Not Very Much and Yeah (see below)

Whatever aesthetic the tracks fall into, they are all have an a uniformity of slight melancholy and overt resignation that is created by the distance of echoed vocals and a  deep vocal demi-boom that automatically adds the sense of the profound to any music.

Lyrically broaches several subjects but excels in it’s deeply dissected different treatment of love. The playful futility of attraction and the human mating game, is conveyed in the Bedouin of The Fitzroy Evening:

She looked me over and she crossed her legs
She saw me look and sipped on her straw
I took a drag just like DeNiro did
She flicked her hair and sipped some more

Whereas the difficulties in commitment or sealing the deal / starting a relationship (you know, that bit where neither party really wants to say ‘well are we an item then?’) are seen in the faux indifference of the lyrically meticulous, Time With You

It’s been great, I want to thankyou for spending this time with me
Next weekend could be good, yeah my calendar’s looking free

Of course the treatment of love in an album would be a tad too peculiar if it did not include ‘lost love’. However with this sort of brilliant song craft you have to exhume multiple superficiality before getting subtle hints of it’s existence, with the repeated chorus of Decent Men :

I noticed when you were away
There’s something that I want to say

…suddenly being added to with an illuminating secondary lines

I noticed when you were away
There’s something that I want to say
I noticed when you went away
There’s something that I should have said

Of course, the band may read this and think ‘absolute toilet mate’ regarding my interpretation of the lyrical meaning. However, that matters not. This album made me search for meaning, allowed me to find mine and stretched my limited intellect for repeated hours…all while providing a wonderful musical accompaniment.

What more could I or anyone want?

Artist Links:  Facebook  Instagram

 

 

 

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