Album review: Bill Callahan

Sometimes I Wish We Were An Eagle

Facts about this album:

* Bill Callahan made his name as lo-fi legend Smog.

* 'Sometimes I Wish We Were An Eagle' is his second album under his own name, and the follow-up to 'Woke On A Whaleheart'.

Album review:

Bill Callahan, the doyen of deadpan, is a beacon to all who eschew the accepted ideas of alternative. As Smog and solo, Callahan has sung/talked his way through 13 albums with a voice like tar. Here, with lush arrangements, sardonic lyricism abounds alongside a song about a pulp fiction author (‘Jim Cain’). The highlight is ‘Eid Ma Clack Shaw’ and not just because it contains both the fine line “All my fine memories are fucking me down” and Beatles-esque strings. In it, Callahan dreams the perfect song, wakes, writes it down and then reads it back in the morning. The punchline should have Flight Of The Conchords taking notes on timing and delivery. A quiet return to form.

Anthony Thornton

More on this artist:

Bill Callahan NME Artist Page

Bill Callahan MySpace

8 / 10

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