Dan Patlansky is a more than fine guitar player and that is clearly evident throughout the new album “Perfection Kills”. I am running a little late with this review to be honest as it actually came out on 2nd February this year (for some reason the review copy has only just arrived), and it has already received many favourable reviews.
South African Dan has recorded this album at Scherzo Productions, a recording studio in Dan’s home town of Pretoria, South Africa, and he is also the producer. Pretoria is certainly not a name that immediately pops into many people’s minds when they think of somewhere to record a blues based album, and that is maybe why the very intentional choice to record here to get a different sound has produced exactly that.
Dan Patlansky’s guitar skills are never in doubt on this album, but there are a lot of very talented musicians out there, so the question for me is “Do the songs here have any real substance behind the technically impressive guitar skills”? Well, the answer to that is always in the details, and you sometimes have to tune out of the music and listen to the words at times. On the 10 songs on this album, Dan is exploring as a writer not only his own personal self but also questioning the state of the world around us in songs that explore our inhumanity to our fellow man, the declining ecological state of our planet and our desensitisation to the world around us through our growing immersion in a digital world. Some very carefully observed words too about just how difficult this world can be for many people for so many reasons. A few glimpses too into the sense of separation from loved ones, the routine of a travelling life and the desire to return home that must be familiar to so many musicians…truly “Never Long Enough”.
As a musician, Dan Patlansky, like any other musician, works from within himself and also influences from outside, and there are obviously many different musical interests and influences on him as a writer and a performer. Our opening track “Johnny” is one such track and for some reason I hear Aerosmith covering this track when I listen to it.
Dan Patlansky has a deserved reputation for his guitar skills, but I hope that on this album people do tune out of that zone for a few moments and recognise that he is a very gifted songwriter too.
There was a March “Perfection Kills” tour, but it’s obviously a bit too late to tell you all about that one here, but just in case anyone can make a few of the remaining dates, visit http://danpatlansky.com/ for more information.
PERFECTION KILLS TRACKS
2. Never Long Enough
4. Too Far Gone ?
5. Judge A Man
6. Junket Man
8. Shake The Cage
9. My Dear Boy
10. Dog Day
Review by Tom King