ROOTS

When the Flood Comes The Au­dreys ABC/ Warner

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music -

THE great strength of the Au­dreys’ de­but album Be­tween Last Night and Us two years ago was that it merged, seam­lessly, strains of alt coun­try, folk and del­i­cate pop melodies. That for­mula is to the fore once again on the South Aus­tralian quin­tet’s fol­low- up, al­though When the Flood Comes swims in darker wa­ters than its pre­de­ces­sor. ‘‘ There’s a big change com­ing down the high­way’’ is the first line of the open­ing song, Chelsea Blues, and it sig­nals the theme that per­me­ates the re­main­ing 11 tracks. Whisky, ap­par­ently, was the fuel that fired up some of th­ese songs. What singer Taasha Coates found at the bot­tom of her glass ap­pears to be, lyri­cally speak­ing, a mix­ture of apoc­a­lypse, re­demp­tion and lust; and, no, she’s not singing about Satur­day nights in Ade­laide. There’s great chem­istry at work here in the meld­ing of banjo, vi­o­lin and an as­sort­ment of rootsy ac­cou­trements with Coates’s frag­ile, breathy vo­cals. It works par­tic­u­larly well on the som­bre, un­der­stated Clos­ing Time, the fu­ne­real Here He Lies and on the equally beau­ti­ful and laid- back Small Things. Fill up the glass and en­joy.

Iain Shed­den

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