The Little Lord Street Band “Time and Place”

Independent, 2024

Impressive melodic Aussie mainstream americana with reflective lyrics and darkness at times.

Album cover artwork for 'Time and Place' by The Little Lord Street BandThe Little Lord Street Band, from Perth in Western Australia, consists of partners Natasha Shanks and James Rogers, with a rhythm section of Michael Savage on bass and Alex Megaw on drums. They have supported acts such as the UK blues band Gomez and Justin Townes Earle. This is their second album, coming after their debut ‘A Minute Of Another Day’ and three EP releases.  It is melodic mainstream americana with a real flair for songwriting on show, having great tunes allied to compelling lyrics. There are echoes of The Eagles, The Byrds and Big Star, although they don’t sound exactly like any of these, with some folk influences at times.

Many of the tracks are credited to Rogers, with Shanks as a co-writer on a couple, although this isn’t the whole story. Written in COVID times, the band’s approach had to differ from the past where they had a “jam-room” style of recording together. Now the initial ideas were sent to isolated band members who then made suggestions and added their parts to tracks.

The title track, ‘Time And Place’, reflects feelings of frustration and anger experienced during the pandemic: “Baby we are killing time”. With a beautiful vocal from Shanks, it has a folk influence and a great melody, as does another track with her vocal on, ‘It’s Just Us’, about Rogers and Shanks expecting their first child.

There is a darkness to some of the lyrics. ‘The Mess’ charts the violent break up of a relationship: “her face was starting to bruise” and the singer admits to his grievous mistakes in ‘You’re Hurt’: “You’re hurt, I hurt you/I don’t expect any kind words from you”. In another Shanks vocal on ‘I Am Enough’, this time with more of a country feel, there are the words “But I stand by the gates, battered and bruised I am the choices I have made”. The opener ‘Can’t Go Back’ with its jangly guitar states “I’ve got rose-tinted memories, of a pain that used to be”.

The momentous, life-changing event of becoming a father has prompted some reflection from Rogers. He says “I guess it’s a ‘looking back’ album,” and you see this contemplation on other tracks. ‘Could Have Been Someone’ is about Shanks’ father, who gave up a soccer career to provide for his family. However, this decision gets the ‘thumbs-up’ from Rogers and, in addition, ‘Chasing A Shadow’ seems to reject the idea of chasing the “fool’s paradise” of success.

A couple of incidents on the road are described compellingly. ‘Burning All Night’ seems to be about witnessing some of the dreadful bushfires experienced in Australia. ‘High Beam Lights’, a very enjoyable country-rocker a bit like Jason Isbell’s ‘Super 8’, has an atmospheric description of only just making it when being dazzled by a full beam from a vehicle coming over a hill in a terrible storm.

Their publicity states that “For a decade they’ve won over the hearts and minds of music lovers across the country” and lists the numerous awards which they have been given. Listening to this album, you can absolutely see why.


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