CD sleeve not available  

PETER NARDINI "Is There Anybody Out There?" Temple Records COMD2020



This new release is actually a re-release from the vinyl days of 1985 with four bonus tracks to take the playing length to just over an hour. So much for the quantity, how about the quality? Well, Peter Nardini is a singer and songwriter, painter and musician, poet and performer, so you know that "painting pictures with words" is going to appear in any review. His penchant was for topical songs and 1985 was a long time ago, so how do the songs stand up? The answer is surprisingly well.

"Why Sink the Belgrano?" may have been overtaken by events but remains relevant with - as the 2000 sleeve notes say - the substitution of the words Kosovo and Blair. The list of Scots celebrities in "Name Droppin'" shows that fame is fleeting while the surreal opening track "Who Is That?" proves that just because you're paranoiac doesn't mean they're not out to get you. The new songs include the superb "Why Did You Let Me Go Out Fishing?" with its "they said that time was mine to borrow and I believed what I was told". And just when you're thinking the boy's a failed romantic you get "Hogmanay" in a posh-Connolly accent or "Lanarkshire Girls" la Beach Boys with its memorable "The girls from Shotts are a different breed; especially the ones from Dykeheid."

And there's no mid-Atlantic drawl from our boy: it's jist like it's spoke, and trainee ethnomusicologists and others may bless Temple Records for providing the words. Peter Nardini is a man with his heart in the right place and his pen or brush at the ready to set down the mistakes, hopes and struggles of his fellows.

Alan McIntosh Brown


Living Tradition Homepage