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Pat MacDonald
"Begging Her Graces"

Released 1999
UTCD 010


Produced By John Parish

Tracks and Lyrics

  1. Whiskey Bottle [4:22]
  2. Just To Talk To You [4:08] (MP3)
  3. Little Dark Angel [2:52] (MP3)
  4. Bell Of The Ball [5:44]
  5. Tyranny Of Beauty [3:35] (MP3)
  6. Silence Is Your Friend [4:43]
  7. Nothing Happened [4:11]
  8. Love Me At A Distance [4:27] (MP3)
  9. Severine [4:28]
  10. Space Kitty Blues [3:10]
  11. Jaws Of Life [6:27] (MP3)
  12. Same Ol' Same Ol' [2:55]
  13. Last Song [2:43]

Memorable Lyrics

From Little Dark Angel

" You're a drug - you're a drain
More addictive than cocaine
But I love you and I love me
I only hate this dependency

From Love Me At A Distance

" I offer no resistance
No strain upon your strength
Love me at a distance
I'll love you at length


UlfTone web site (http://www.ulftone.com) - Thanks to WolfgangF for translating this from German to English!

Pat MacDonald - founder of the legendary Timbuk3
His second solo album, preceded by the celebrated "Sleeps With His Guitar"
Produced by John Parish, well known for his work with PJ Harvey

"Begging Her Graces" is the second solo album from one of the most talented songwriters of 20th century. PAT MACDONALD, who started in the musical scene in 1984 with the folk-roots-technoband Timbuk3 and a top 20 hit "The Future's So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades", has developed further. After his solo debut "Sleeps With His Guitar" and a tour through Europe with Chris Whitley, he met John Parish, producer and mastermind of PJ Harvey, who among other things produced Harvey's last album "To Give You My Love" guiding it in his very own direction. Pat and John met in Barcelona and began to play and arrange together. Parish, who became a sort of "Partner in Crime", played more and more instruments and enhanced the much more modern, coloured style of this remarkable album. From the very coarse opener "Whiskey Bottle" to the first single "Just To Talk To You" to intimate songs, reduced to it minimal essence like "Tyranny of Beauty", this album offers a journey to the world of emotions. This all has been captured on the highest level of production equipment. One of the highlights is the hypnotical "The Jaws of Life", supported by two of the most important traditional spanish musicians on tablas and percussion, recorded live in one take. This album opens for Pat MacDonald the door to mainstream without losing his power and soul.

Christopher Hess - From The Austin Chronicle, February 16, 2001 (on-line article)


It always seems as if Pat MacDonald isn't quite telling us the whole story -- that the ex-Timbuk 3 principal is holding something back, a bit of information that gives him the advantage. His songs shudder with a dark intensity, sung by a knowing voice fronting a formidable wit. And the literary acrobatics are only half the story; the music on this European release, enhanced by producer John Parish and many other contributors, is both delicate and defiant, an unusual depth for the traditional instrumentations, and a strange familiarity with lute, varija, and archilaud. Opener "Whiskey Bottle" starts things off on a typically contradictory note: hope and despair in the same breath. The album comes alive with "Little Dark Angel," a horribly catchy melody, the sweet-hot juxtaposition of plunky banjo and electric guitar the perfect foil for the vocal play between MacDonald's morose mid-tone and Lidia Pujol's lilting backup. Solo acoustic numbers glide off full electric numbers, the remainder of the album demonstrating a wider range of sounds than his last release ...Sleeps With His Guitar. No clutter, though, only the realization of ideas and melodies. "Severine" is disarmingly straightforward and sincere, "Space Kitty Blues" is a nutty romp -- the contradictions just won't leave you alone. There's a lot Pat MacDonald hasn't told us -- not yet, anyway.

Connie Johnson (cmj@itol.com)

I really love this CD.

All of the new songs are terrific, but some of them are especially bound to repeat again and again in your head. The opening, "Whiskey Bottle", starts with intriguing drumming which pulls you in. And the vocal begins to draw a storyboard in your mind. The music turns funky and grinding....and...then adds another dimension as Pat cranks the heat higher by adding his harmonica. He sings with wonderful range on all 13 new songs....and the lyrics are powerful.

"Space Kitty Blues" is an especially fine piece of poetry. It's an exciting piece that just keeps rolling.....makes you want to dance. It moves along in such a way that it's funny, clever, sexy, and all the while you're wondering: what IS he talking' about?

"Little Dark Angel" takes us in another direction (and true to Pat MacDonald....several directions all at once). Makes me think I'm about to hear a lively mountain dulcimer song... piney woods and hillbillies. Instead he fires off an oath of love for a demon childlike lover. Lidia Pujol's sweet voice is just a perfect blend here too.

This CD is a wonderful experience. It tells so many stories on different levels. I can't pick a favorite song and I can't pick one that I don't like. There is a lot of variety.

Last update: 2002-Dec-02

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