Review: Harper – Day By Day
Posted on: Wednesday, Jun 20, 2007
HARPER – “Day By Day”
Blind Pig Records (BPCD 5512)
The second Blind Pig offering from Australian musician Harper offers a heady mix of roots music – from funk to blues to rock – with the 12 original tracks all beautifully sung and performed, featuring his own harmonica and didgeridoo, together with the odd sample and effect.
Harper (aka Peter D. Harper) is a fine talent, soon to hit these shores, and well worth catching live on the evidence of this release – indeed he has a very busy 2007 with tours in the US, Canada and a trip back home to Australia.
He has surrounded himself with some sympathetic backing musicians, including the excellent Andy York on guitar, who has stints with John Mellencamp and Ian Hunter on his CV, indeed the guitar work is very nice as a whole, with Gregg Leonard and Tyler Mac sharing the duties.
It is obvious Harper likes to present his listeners with intelligent and thought-provoking songs – such as the funky opener “Do What Is Right” – a case of morals against politics; his didgeridoo makes an appearance on “One Day”, another song with a funk feel and crunch guitar work.
The smoky, laid-back “Watch Your Back” is a tale of contractual small-print, but for me the best track is the lovely “Feel’s Like Sunday Morning” – lovely slide guitar from Andy York and a nice summery feel – definite Radio 2 material; the rocking “Get Out Of This Mess” kicks off with some fine harmonica – with a lyric about the mess in Iraq!
Harper’s harmonica may not be to the blues purists taste, sometimes it is perfectly fine, but I can do without the John Popper-style workouts and effects, but I’m sure many will love it. The thought of a didgeridoo-playing Australian releasing an album on one of America’s finest blues labels will have some holding their hands up in horror, but this release is a delight which I can thoroughly recommend!