Paul Dempsey
Everything Is True


4.0
excellent

Review

by Adam Knott EMERITUS
December 2nd, 2009 | 57 replies | 7,874 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Everybody's in on the joke.

One of the most disingenuous terms commonly used to praise music and artists is 'effortless.' Somewhere along the line, it became an unequivocally good thing for an artist not to really be trying. Worse still, it became a negative trait to sound like you were trying. There are moments on Everything Is True when Paul Dempsey's voice strains with the weight of anger or frustration to the point that it makes you uncomfortable, and though Everything Is True is not through a wider lens a harsh album, it is these moments of unbridled personal connection which set the Something For Kate frontman's debut record above its apparent peers.

That's not to say that Everything Is True is sub-par on the musical front - absolutely not - simply that Dempsey's presence as a lyricist eclipses the folk-rock background to his words, and that is enormous praise considering the intricate and warm melodies that flow from guitars and pianos throughout. And neither is dispensable; 'Ramona Was A Waitress' is nothing without its smoky rumbling rhythm, is nothing without its perfect refrain of, "I don't need these arms anymore. I don't need this heart now to love. I don't need this skin and bone at all." Each song is substantially more than the sum of its parts.

Those parts play off each other, too, in rewarding fashion. Dempsey is clearly a thoughtful songwriter, not a calculated one by any means, but a man capable of injecting layers and degrees of irony and cynicism into his songs; it's there in the way he sounds so resigned on 'Fast Friends' as he laments that he "know[s] no quicker way, dear, to the shiny gates of hell, than a room full of handsome devils comparing everything to everything else." And in that line is the secret, also, to Everything Is True's lasting value: its, and Dempsey's, ability to deliver and express slightly-buried sentiments with slightly-obscure images.

"Because," according to Dempsey, "only a freak would sing in a crowded waiting room." This fascination with the tentative and grey areas between love and hate drives Everything Is True in all of its uncertain ponderings to align itself with the urge to scream along to the very same sentiments that he's expressing. He's a master of the difficult confession, the uneasy truth, and his first solo full-length showcases that talent through eleven incredibly endearing songs: no tricks, no gimmicks, just Paul Dempsey, his troubled psyche and the instruments you can fit into the backroom of a pub where people go to escape to somewhere easier.



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user ratings (79)
Chart.
4.1
excellent
other reviews of this album
David James Young (4)
Aussie musician becomes citizen of the world with a focused, intelligent solo debut....

doug (5)
Paul Dempsey delivers one of the most beautiful albums of the decade in his first ever solo outing....


Comments:Add a Comment 
Knott-
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



10194 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

on demand

album is fucking brilliant

Kiran
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



6000 Comments


wait woah, this is similar to weakerthans - reconstruction site? i love that album

Digging: Spoon - They Want My Soul

Knott-
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



10194 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

bit more chill and straightforward but there are lots of things in common, very similar overall aesthetic

Kiran
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



6000 Comments


cool, i'm totally sold on this in that case

good review as always

Ponton
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



5784 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I'm interested in this as well.

Superb writing Adam, you have my vote.

klap
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2009



10258 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

finally got this yesterday coincidentally

Digging: The Bilinda Butchers - Heaven

YouAreMySilence
December 2nd 2009



3727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ya I really got a Weakerthans vibe from this too, fucking awesome album.

Knott-
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



10194 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh sweet; good to know I'm not going mad :D

I mean, I still might be, but..

YouAreMySilence
December 2nd 2009



3727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Don't worry brofo
After awhile Sputnik begins to make you trade in your sanity for good music.

Kiran
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



6000 Comments


cannot find this anywhere on the interweb

YouAreMySilence
December 2nd 2009



3727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Some one has all the tracks on youtube.

Waior
December 2nd 2009



11425 Comments


Listening to albums on YouTube is death

YouAreMySilence
December 2nd 2009



3727 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Its better than not listening to it at all.

Eclectic
December 2nd 2009



3302 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Wow, surprised to see another review of this. I really like this album but it goes down to a 4 for me because I lost interest in the last half, after "Ramona Was A Waitress". They're by no means bad songs, but I'd rather switch to something else or replay the first half again.
Great review too, pos'd.

klap
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2009



10258 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

kir get waffles

Kiran
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



6000 Comments


dont you need to be invited or something

klap
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2009



10258 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yes i'll work on that

Kiran
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



6000 Comments


sounds like a plan to me

Knott-
Emeritus
December 2nd 2009



10194 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

review was half for dougie haha, and the album deserves more attention.

cheers guys. check this out.

Douglas
December 2nd 2009



9061 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Whoa you did that quickly, thanks for postin this guy needs all the attention he can get!

Review is fucking incredible too!



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