Album review: The Balladeer Hunter - Mike Noga

JAMES BELFIELD
Last updated 05:00 06/02/2013
Mike Noga
The Balladeer Hunter - Mike Noga

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THE BALLADEER HUNTER
Mike Noga
(Rhythmethod)

Having put together this second solo offering during a quick timeout from Aussie rock staples The Drones, drummer-cum-folk troubadour Mike Noga found himself invited to tour Europe with alt-country giants Band of Horses.

It's hard to imagine the same request coming after his first folk outing, 2005's simple Folk Songs, but The Balladeer Hunter hits its prey firmly in the heart with a mixture of Dylan's Desire (thanks in no small part to Jen Anderson's violin) and stripped back Americana - all delivered with enough of an Aussie drawl to invoke images of Ned Kelly's dusty demise rather than Pat Garrett or the Sundance Kid.

Wistful harmonica and stunningly obtuse lyrics help make this a surprising folk gem.

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