As horrifying as David Feehan’s new album is – and really, you have lived until you’ve heard his ritualistic slaughtering of The Staple’s Respect Yourself, I imagine Feehan, shirt off, and covered in blood, punch-drunk and tripping-balls from the strange powers of the goat’s horn he’s crunched up to provide sustenance as he disembowels the song, nearly disembodying singing in the process – I still worry most for the fact that he’s responsible (if that’s the word?) for the singing/musical careers of others.
An enthusiastic cheerleader for the youth of today – they, too, could go on to one day vanity-publish their own botch-jobbed covers collections, don’t cha know! – Feehan’s position as gig organiser and tutor is all part of the ongoing derangement – the delusion – that music is, like, just his thing, man.
I imagine he sits back and thinks he’s hearing Van Morrison bellowing back from the speakers. I imagine he perhaps only listens to his own albums – I worry that he imagines anyone else ever listening to them (hey, you know how this goes: I did this so you don’t have to!)
In the most painfully earnest liner notes I’ve ever read he even has a kiss-off to reviewers, telling us/them/whoever that he likes his own music and that’s all that matters. And before that he points out that his previous album was, like, just not raw enough man, that was the reason it wasn’t liked – it was too polished bra! It was, like, made up of such variety, dude! Bro! It was like lean and mean and full of ideas and shit…
So, album number four. And in a range of song-styles that runs the gamut from Transmogrifying Cover Version to Hopelessly Inept But Oh-So-Heartfelt Ballad With A Jazz-Rock Twist we get revolting duets (his first-time singer niece, his son Sean, a few other family members and singing student friends) that borrow guitar solos from the albums Phil Collins made 25 years ago, that borrow arrangements from the Boz Scaggs albums you never listened to, that steal little pieces of your will to live, little glistening glimpses of your soul. (If only any of that soul taken had been applied here). This is so white it practically screams entitlement. But then self-published CD with earnest liner notes, a picture of the hero himself sitting next to a John Lennon statue and woeful ideas-above-station song-attempts…that’s white entitlement right thur!