Johnny Daukes “A False Parade”
Although this is the first album Johnny Daukes has released under his own name he’s been around for a fair while in bands and under different monikers and that experience shows in this superb set. No devotee of the less is more school, Daukes builds up layers of sound into mighty walls, but always lets his voice take centre stage.
“The Emperor’s Old Clothes” quietly eviscerates organised religion and the politicians who harness it and in fact there’s a quiet anger at the state of the world underpinning many of the songs. The opening “Shoot You Down” has a snatch of Martin Luther King’s famous speech and mourns Kennedy’s death while “Vincent” takes on the Iraq war to powerful effect.
Elsewhere Daukes exposes his inner progger. “A Roll Call” builds into a full on blast driven by a scorching guitar solo and is distinctly Floyd-ian but not as much as “First Blood To The Young One” which has some Gilmour-esque solo-ing and Clare Terry-like wailing and is uncompromisingly wonderful. “Anthem (For Wasted Youth” is as close as Daukes gets to jaunty as in the main this is dark and intense stuff.
It is ambitious and that ambition is matched by Daukes talent and the result is a mighty, mighty noise.