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On Your Sleeve
Classic songs from everyone from Elton John to the Hold Steady, done in Jessee Malin's inimitable style; that is, turgid, bluesy, country pub rock.
Patrick Freyne, 05 Nov 2008
Here’s a little game I like to play called, “If I knew Jesse Malin, and if he asked my advice about his records.” Okay, imagine that me and Jesse Malin are kicking back over at his ‘pad’. Possibly we’re drinking tall beers or playing table tennis in his games room.
“Hey I’ve an idea Patrick, can I run it by you?”
“Sure. Hit me Jesse Malin.”
“Okay. Why don’t I take a number of classic songs from everyone from Elton John to the Hold Steady and do them in my own inimitable style!”
“You mean, turgid, bluesy, country pub rock that makes me lose the will to live?”
“Exactly. That is my style.”
“I think that’s a terrible idea, Jesse. Have you considered doing the Civil Service exam?”
And thus the world as we know it would have changed slightly for the better. If only I had known Jesse Malin and he sought my advice on things. It’s not as earth shattering as what would have happened had I had one of my little talks with Adolf Hitler or George W. Bush or the guy who took Wispas of the market (again), but it would have been something. Because covers albums make sense when they come from people with very idiosyncratic voices or inventive personalities. Jesse Malin is not one of these people, and the end results aren’t much better than a local cover band battering the crap out of the classics in your local rural watering hole. And if things were different I could have spared you all that.