First Review

Much love and thanks to good friend of DMB, Paul Bingley for this eloquent review of Carousels. I could not have put it better myself.

One Finished Symphony.

Us Doves fans are hardy souls. We routinely experience fleeting moments of overwhelming joy, punctuated by long years of mental anguish. As soon as our heroes re-appear, they’re gone again. It says something about Doves that they can vanish for over a decade and still return to such devoted adoration. No other band commands the same respect. And one listen to Carousels should tell non-fans why.

This is Doves at their supreme magnificence. This is epic, multi-layered, sonic wonderfulness. This is how goose bumps are made; how hairs are made to stand on end; how one can sit there for hours and hours playing the same song on an endless loop like I have today (and as I did with Kingdom of Rust). Maybe it’s because I keep trying to stay ‘in the moment’ in case they bugger off again.

I forgot, until it was pointed out, that Carousels actually started life as a Black Rivers’ demo. I then remembered seeing a video of Jez working on the track while Andy ‘waltzed’ around the Anglesey farmhouse they were recording in. It was a time when we, as Doves fans, were happy to hear any form of Doves, no matter how distant the band was. As I watched that video, I kept thinking how good the track sounded. But as with some Black Rivers’ offerings, brilliant though they always were, it was missing something –a key ingredient –one that would help take it to the ‘masterpiece’ level. All it needed was a dash of Jimi.

Well, here it is. The finished dish. Jimi’s vocals of ‘muddy fields’ and ‘circles of trust’ have been blended with stirring strings and a hypno-rhythmic drumbeat to make Carousels lusciously good. They’re back again –those Mancunian waltzers. There’s even a There Goes the Fear samba-sounding soupçon. This is an authentic, Michelin-starred, three-course feast of song, made by the finest musical chefs this side of tune heaven.

In my opinion, Carousels is the best Doves’ serving since Kingdom of Rust, which, in my opinion, remains one of the greatest musical scores ever produced. But then I would say that, wouldn’t I. I’m a hardy soul who loves Doves, no matter how many times they bleedin’ fly away. That’s because I know they’ll always be here with symphonies like this.