Stuart Warwick ‘The Butcher’s Voice’ – album review
Stuart Warwick ‘The Butcher’s Voice’ (Stuart Warwick)
Released 14th January 2013
Stuart Warwick is a human being who could make you insanely jealous. Put him in a room, large or small, with/even without a keyboard, he opens his mouth by the tiniest amount and an all-encompassing passionate sound fills the entire space. He can make you stand dead-still just listening or sit there and burst into tears. The bastard! I remember hearing him for the first time at the De Le Warr Pavilion, my better half dragging me across the country for Marc Almond. I’d never heard of the support before but after a few seconds I would never ever forget. Anything Stuart Warwick touches is simply pure genius. “Oh yeah right, never heard of him”, I hear you say. Well neither had I but frankly you SHOULD hear him.
The Butcher’s Voice is his fourth album, the second under his own name. The first two he released using his Jacob’s Stories guise, as he was when I first heard that night… Anyways, this album is a continuation of themes of love, life, religion, man and man’s hate, which, to put mildly is a generalistic overview. Above all and to label a neat little box, Stuart Warwick is a singer-songwriter. He uses electronics. Sometimes sparsely allowing the sparkling hedonistic quality of his breathtakingly natural voice to shine. Sometimes he adds other elements; orchestral/strings, and occasionally all-out percussive for mutual dancefloor excursions. BUT, of all the effortless beauty, it’s the strength of poetry which prevails from the man. He is funny. He is camp(ish). He is cabaret. He is serious (once made me cry listening to a few of his words whilst on a post-round!). He is art. He just IS… See I told you he is a complete and utter bastard. Who else could make lines like “Call the mortician” and “Cadavre with a big mouth” operatically fly into the ether on what is essentially a popsong? Albeit a visceral Stuart Warwick no-holds popsicle called ‘Dame Binned Cow’.
On The Butcher’s Voice the stage beckons for a ‘Man With A Pussy’s piano and angelics to echo around a packed theatre whilst the title track is a pure radio anthem to which a commercial audience should sing, tap their feet and clap along to. Uplifting. Meantime, ‘Melancolonica’ and ‘Cherished Muscle’ simply do what Stuart Warwick does best, he opens his heart and makes me listen just as I did that first night. There is perhaps one artist who I would dearly love to hear him and that is Gavin Friday, I’m sure they would get along like a house on fire!
Stuart Warwick is an outstanding writer and musician (even acts on the odd video by The Twilight Sad) who transcends mere category as a performer. As much as I love X-Factor it would be fun to see the panel’s faces as Stu unassumingly let’s rip. He would quite literally piss into their open mouths too and LAUGH. Make him a star. The world would truly be a much better place. He’ll lead you through every emotion. He’s funny, he’s intelligent but above all when you hear him you’ll be glad you’re alive.
2. Birds That Don’t Fly
3. Cherished Muscle
4. The Butcher’s Voice
5. Man With a Pussy
6. Dreams of a Tomato Can
7. Dame Binned Cow
10. The Nail That Sticks Out Gets Pounded
11. The Fairer Sex