Seven years can seem like an eternity when you’re waiting for something whether it’s the end of a spat of bad luck or for the members of Dirty Three to stash their hobbies in the corner and return to the fold as Australia’s fiercest trio – one that can reduce a fan to tears with just the sinewy moan of a violin.
Mick Turner, Jim White and Warren Ellis didn’t wile away the intervening hours shufffling around in house slippers crocheting winter scarves and hats for family friends. Each pursued interests that kept them in the spotlight (Ellis collaborated with Nick Cave on the soundtrack to The Road and *he Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford) or at least onstage (a memorable stint with Cat Power in Paris at Le Bataclan). Yet, the missing element – a new record – tugged at the hearts of the devoted. Dirty Three obliged with Feburary’s Toward The Low Sun (Drag City).
Opening with a jolt that would arouse even the deepest sleeper, the album proves there’s no rest for the wicked or weary. Snapping guitar and distracted drums engage in a duel atop a threatening precipice, while Ellis’ strings narrate the unfolding tragedy. (Wednesday@Lincoln Hall.)
About the Author: