Samuel Flynn Scott - Straight Answer Machine
28 May 2008 // A review by johnsoncraigsbc
Stepping away from electronic Americana and heading towards tropical folk, ‘Straight Answer Machine’ is Samuel Flynn Scotts’ second solo performance that supports his song writing potential. ‘Straight Answer Machine’ leads us on a mystical journey through his ideological landscapes and on through good hard times.
Scott, being the exceptional songwriter that he is, has created yet another album filled with singles, and because of his single writing ability, the album is somewhat fragmented. Single upon single, without the ensnaring connectivity of his preceding records.
The album artwork is quality. Using Jacob Walker from the phoenixes ‘Happy Ending’ fame, highlights the utopian image ‘Llewellyn’ jumps in to. Looking at the great, misunderstood architecture Wellington has to offer, a flattering compliment to the soft spoken ‘Bunnies of Ponies’.
Scott is this time accompanied by ‘The Bunnies on Ponies’, which he has made numerous appearances with in his live shows. The B.O.P. is a mix of the bastard child’s of Wellington music, but collectively churns out the tight, usable sound Scott would’ve been looking for.
Standout single ‘Raver on Probation’ is reminiscent of a self-inflicted, good hard time, but the Dylanesque ‘All My Dreams’ is by far the most refined and emotive piece of on album. The joyous but intriguingly emotive nature of the single makes this a live favorite.
Straight Answer Machine lacks the electronic elements that made ‘The Hunt Brings Us Life’ so intriguing, but the newfound folk direction definitely is an interesting one. If this sound could be incorporated into the progressive, interlinking structure of his previous albums (namely ‘Pegasus’), then it would enhance the creditability of his natural song writing abilities even more.
About Samuel Flynn Scott
It so happened that in 2004, Samuel Flynn Scott had crafted a handful of songs that did not quite fit the mould of The Phoenix Foundation, the popular Wellington-based rock band. "I was writing a whole lot of material that seemed a bit folksy for The Phoenix Foundation," says Scott. "Also, I was listening to a lot of improvised and angular music and somehow wanted to combine those elements into one project."
Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Samuel Flynn Scott
In order to do justice to this haunting new material, Scott formed a new band called Bunnies on Ponies. After playing at Wellington’s Matterhorn Bar, Mikee Tucker of Loop Recordings, who suggested that Loop finance an album of Scott's solo songs.
The recording ensemble included Tom Callwood (a double bass player who was integral in the development of the music), engineer Brett Stanton, producer and banjo player David Long and a succession of drummers: Craig Terris (Cassette), Riki Gooch (TrinityRoots) and Mike Fabulous (The Black Seeds, Bunnies On Ponies).