Simple Twist of Fate

Dave's True Story

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Simple Twist of Fate Review

by Hal Horowitz

With only seven Bob Dylan covers (three are reprised as "radio edits," another is repeated as an "alternative mix"), and a closing original tune, this is more an EP than a full-length album. Regardless, Dave's True Story does right by Dylan, covering songs from the early part of his career, with two coming from Blood on the Tracks and two from Blonde on Blonde. Reinterpreting them in the DTS' lounge-core, tropicalia fashion works surprisingly well for the most part, emphasizing Dylan's edgy lyrics as singer Kelly Flint brings her languid, torchy sensuality to the mix. Hardcore Dylan fans might find these versions on the smooth side, but the arrangements, while easy-going, are not necessarily easy listening. Stripped down to just stand-up bass, brushed drums, predominantly unplugged guitars, and just a hint of organ emphasizes the unique chord changes that mark the best of Dylan's work. Unearthing New Morning's jazzy "If Dogs Run Free," with talk and sung vocals from David Cantor as Flint scats behind him, is a terrific and unexpected find. "It's All Over Now Baby Blue" is the only track here that doesn't translate as well to the DTS style, since the words are too cutting to be sung in such a relaxed fashion. Additionally, Flint changes notes from the original when she sings "blue" in the chorus, which is jarring. The second "alternative" stab at "You're a Big Girl Now" features reverbed, noir surf guitar, infusing a moody and dynamic twist to the song. "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues" plays closest to the original, but Flint's direct approach misses Dylan's sly, understated humor. The lone new composition, "Blood and Bone," although a good-enough DTS track, doesn't belong here musically, and one wonders why the band could not have worked up a few more Dylan tunes to flesh out this otherwise excellent project.

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