Album Review Dream Buffet by Restless Leg (2021) (Peabody Recordings)


Dream Buffet, the third album by Sydney based foursome, Restless Leg, offers major benefits on two distinct levels.
Initially, fans of all things Antipodean style, jangly indie, are going to be enamoured by the sense that the album is something of a guide to what the very best of 80 and 90s ‘Oceanic’ had to offer.
From the dulcet The Bats style, faux melodies of the superlative The World’s A Room and A Song About A Song, through to the second era The Go-Betweens jangle pop of Oblivion Banjo and Of Timber and Tiling and culminating in the sweeter lucidity of The Chills style, Caught The Corners and The Wheel It Turns, Restless Leg show a superb, instinctive mastery of a musical heritage that has perfectly consumed them.
On a second level, this albums rewards those prepared to wait on it becoming the ultimate grower. This is especially the case for those of us of middle-aged years, who may recognize lyrics adorned with ‘our concerns’.
The ponderance over a constant sense of ‘swimming against the tide’, can be seen in The World’s A Room, as energy is wasted getting absolutely nowhere:
Turns out all the world’s a room
I walked for miles in my room
I climbed a mountain, climbed a stair
I reached the peak I’d gone nowhere
In the very same moment
This sentiment of resignation to the futility of having never arrived at one of life’s traditional destinations, is also seen in the hopelessness of the following from Oblivion Banjo:
A photograph of me
Taking photos of the sea
Plotting a winding path
On a decades long graph
Linked to this futility and perhaps even because of it, is the sense that the maturity of years does not appear to have led to any definitive self identity.  The almost surf-laden chiming jangle of I Have No Choice I am Tree. opines this lack of a place in the grand scheme of life, stating:
I don’t know why
I am me
Born of the earth
Stars and the sea
I am no foe
No enemy
I have no choice
I am a tree
Similiarly, In A Mirror Life laments life’s inconsequentiality, declaring:
Another year, another one
So I tallied up everything I done
Searched my mind and as I feared
For all that’s gone and there’s nothing here
Undoubtedly their best yet, despite the stiff competition, in essence, this is one of those albums that reveals more with every listen. Even if some of it may have made this oldie think a little too much !





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