Draw Tippy

Draw Tippy

Independent release, 2004


REVIEW BY: Jason Warburg


Dave Pachence has a killer music collection.

That is my first conclusion after a few listens to the eponymous debut disc from Pachence's one-man-show "band" Draw Tippy. Influences - mostly dating from the club scene circa 1982 -- fly by in a hailstorm of catchy melodies, killer riffs and tongue-in-cheek lyrics whose sonic complexity belies the fact this disc was recorded solo, assembled piece by piece in Pachence's New York City bedroom.

Starting strong, young Dave - who sounds a bit like every 20-something punk-pop singer you've ever heard, except with great taste in music and a sophisticated sense of humor - opens with the throbbing, clever, insanely catchy "Oscillate." The fat guitar riffs, the swirling, giddy synths, the acerbic deconstruction of the poseur-filled club crowd… this is just sweet, sweet stuff.

"Armageddon Girl" comes along next, matching a nice acoustic riff to perky synths in a marriage that shouldn't work but does - brilliantly. Calling this space-age goof "catchy" doesn't do justice to a song that has you singing along before you even get through the first listen…my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The remainder of the disc is filled with the explosive genius of a modern-day slacker-geek musical savant possessed by the spirit of every great '80s dance band. "15 Minutes Of Lame" crosses Simple Plan with A Flock Of Seagulls and comes out a winner. "California" takes a rockabilly beat, adds Beach Boys harmonies and a surreal electronic edge that - again -- shouldn't work, but does.

In one of my favorite moments on this disc, "Wasted It" starts out with a somewhat obvious "time to get serious"-type acoustic ballad riff, which builds briefly until Pachence comes in with the lyric: "I guess this is where I should say something clever / Everything, nothing, anything, whatever." The lyric straddles a fine line the rest of the way through between genuine anguish and smirking self-mockery.

In another priceless turn, on "Decide" Pachence puts the truth to every rock and roller's protestations of artistic integrity, admitting that "The words to this song / Are really dumb / It ain't no Marvin Gaye, it ain't no Macy Gray… I wrote this song / So you can decide if you want me tonight." After declaring himself not as good as a laundry list of hit-makers -- "It ain't no Taylor Dayne / it ain't no Shania Twain" being one of the better rhymes -- he reveals his true ambition: "And if everything's going well / I'll get to see what's in your sweater."

Oh, fine, one more song before I wrap this up - it's just too perfect. "I'll Wait" stays true to the rest of this album's source material by adding the perfect punchline to a classic '80s movie moment - the infamous "John Cusack uses Peter Gabriel to stalk his crush" scene in Say Anything -- as Pachence's impatient and not very original would-be boyfriend tries this approach: "Standing on her lawn / With a vintage raincoat on / Got my boom box overhead / Blasting 'In Your Eyes' / 'Till her mother cries / 'Won't you please just go away?!'"

I could go on, but why? You get the point. Draw Tippy is a treasure trove of sharp-witted songs boasting retro synths and fat guitars blasting impossibly catchy riffs into the darkest corners of your brain. It's the completely fulfilled vision of an audaciously talented music lover whose greatest artistic ambition is to make you smile. I did over and over again listening to this album.

Rating: A-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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