Liberation / Warner
Like the indefatigable Paul Kelly, Australian singer-songwriter Mark Seymour is one of a number of hugely successful antipodean artists yet to come to mass attention away from their home territory. Having fronted the seminal Melbourne band Hunters and Collectors for 18 years, Seymour clearly has the necessary musical talent, and Embedded, his third solo offering, could be the album that achieves that goal.
A dark examination of suburban life, Embedded is an intriguing listen, with songs like the quirky “In the Kitchen of a Perfect Home” and the quite brilliant “Paradise Downunder” sharing the common theme of glimpsing behind the curtains of suburbia.
The powerful “Shoulder To Cry On” reveals Seymour at his most intense, as he smashes through the sheen of neighborhood respectability to again make a scathing comment on the betrayal and deceit so common in places like the “Waratah Street” he sings of later in the album. Elsewhere, “Out of This World” and “Left Alive” are glorious slices of modern and anthemic pop-rock, while “Made Man” is a curious, yet poignant song which pays tribute to a mysterious unnamed figure.
Producer Cameron MacKenzie provides a sonic depth to Seymour’s captivating songs, and the result is a wholly compelling and daring album which successfully crosses traditional singer-songwriter boundaries. Hopefully, music fans from outside Australia will want to share in its insight too.
Mark Seymour: http://www.markseymour.com.au/