I think one of the great records of 2019 that was overlooked by most was Hope is for the Hopeless, the debut LP from the Golden Dregs; I know I wrote about several of the singles on these very pages. Well, a few months on, and Benjamin Woods (the artists behind the project) has decided to rework his title track with the help of London bunch Vogues. You still get Woods hearty baritone, but the guitar has been stripped and reworked with electronic production. Subtle beats and robotic backing vocals take the song into the more uplifting territory Woods hoped we’d all noticed on the original version; I don’t think those sweet jazzy horns were present either. If you haven’t heard the original version, you can do listen to the whole LP HERE, and stream the reworked magic below!
I don’t know how many of you are paying attention, but if you’re not listening to Benjamin Woods and his project, The Golden Dregs, then you really are missing out on something special. The last single from the forthcoming Hope is for the Hopeless has him channeling something darkly beautiful, something along the lines of Cohen or Cave…and its not just the baritone speaking. My favorite line comes around 2:30: “and the Jesus on the dashboard is shaking/cause he knows there’s no way home.” But, this isn’t all clever word play and idealistic homage, there’s some incredible craftsmanship, particularly in the way the tinkering piano moves into the more prominent performance just after the 3 minute mark. The LP is out on September 27th and you’ll be sorry you don’t have it, if that happens to be the case.
We’re just over a month away from the release of the next album from the Golden Dregs, thus today warrants another single from the project. I think those of you who have found yourselves fans of Cohen or Waits might find some comfort in the baritone voice of Benjamin Woods, much as I do; it’s got this effortless croon, like only the hippest of lounge acts. For me, the success in this song revolves around the contrast in all the guitar bits; there’s this heavy groove that drives through the track, though its intermittently juxtaposed with this funky guitar line boogieing through the tune. Thus far, this might be my favorite off Hope is for the Hopeless; it drops on September 27th.