CD review: Free Range - The Mutton Birds

JAMES BELFIELD
Last updated 05:00 02/12/2012
Free Range - The Mutton Birds
Free Range - The Mutton Birds

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FREE RANGE
The Mutton Birds
(Rhythmethod)

When Don manages to elicit a cheer for his euphonium from Auckland's Kings Arms crowd at the end of show-opener Envy of Angels, you know that the Mutton Birds are in familiar and friendly territory.

Like a wonderful fossil in the bedrock of Kiwi music, The Mutton Birds are both beautiful and important - the familiarity of Dominion Rd, Nature and Anchor Me may have turned them into aural wallpaper, but you'd be hard-pressed to find better examples of that peculiar Kiwi mix of pop-storytelling than this collection of excellently Radio New Zealand-recorded classics.

In many respects (and David Long's guitar on the heavier tracks is definitely one) these live versions give new impetus to familiar sounds and mean that your vinyls may well hang around even longer gathering dust while you enjoy this free range renaissance.

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