As well as being a prolific collaborator with artists like Bernie Griffen, Tami Neilson, and Donna Dean, Tony Daunt has in recent years featured in the Auckland folk scene with his own psycho-billy rock’n’roll band Swampland.
‘The Gypsy’ is an album of material under his own name – a collection of darkly-toned country songs evoking Nick Cave and Johnny Cash, at least two decades in the writing. ‘The Gypsy’ is steady, with solid performances from all involved.
Though entertaining there isn’t enough happening to make this one stand out from the many other alt-country albums that appear regularly.
A couple of songs do shine through. The Chris Isaac styling of Gypsy is pretty, with the pedal steel guitar providing a seductive backdrop for a strident performance by Daunt, and the rollicking Misery is a riotous Nick Cave-esque stomper, unfortunately let down by occasionally predictable, clichéd rhyming lyrics.
‘The Gypsy’ has clearly been a labour of love for Daunt and his band – the songs have been crafted to present his vision and the performances are solid, but he ends up sounding too similar to his influences – with little sense of his own style in the music.
Available From: AAA Records