Milk Roulette - Charlie Dore4 Stars from David Innes:
Milk Roulette is honest, amusing and proudly English, as we’ve come to expect from the free artistic spirit that is Charlie Dore, who confesses that she usually disguises the tales behind the songs, but Milk Roulette is ‘the most personal album I’ve made so far‘.
This is a release grounded in real life. Songs, thematically linked through birth, marriage and death, are at turns wistfully or joyously sung over Dore’s uncomplicated instrumentation, supported by the ever faithful Julian Littman and simple but gorgeous Dudley Philips, Gareth Huw Davies and Jake Walker string arrangements.
From the opening ‘All These Things‘ a muse upon a longed-for child’s future as scientists create its life in a Petri dish, through the folky Nick Drake-hinting melody and arrangement of ‘Looking Like My Mother, Acting Like My Dad‘, to ‘Please Don’s Let Me Be Promoted‘, a wry look at premature death, the quality never dips. Referencing her mother’s own early passing in ‘Please Don’t let Me Be Promoted’, Charlie’s moving vocal is worthy of Tony Hooper.
Born Yesterday‘ expresses tender devotion to a newborn. Was the unconditional love, excitement and apprehension of parenthood ever expressed better than Charlie’s ‘My heart’s a bowl of butter in the sun‘, as a beautiful Walker violin figure provides the underscore.
David Innes R2 RocknReel