BY JOSE MARTINEZ
For many, goth pioneer David J (born David John Haskins) is beloved for his work in Bauhaus, and Love and Rockets. I have to confess that era of alt rock was lost on me as I was more the hard rock guy. Sure, I could appreciate Bauhaus’ “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” but in 1989 I was more into Appetite for Destruction and The Cult’s Sonic Temple than Love and Rockets, even though I could still dig on “So Alive.”
My, times have changed. At this point in my music appreciation I can really appreciate David J’s latest release, the acoustic driven An Eclipse of Ships. Described by David J as a “journal of the heart and a celebration of women,” this record comes across as more country alt rock than goth days revisited. The release features musicians on violin, piano, stand-up bass, mandolin, oboe, saxophone, and a slew of acoustic guitars. It aptly mixes folk, country, and rockabilly with a savvy sense of pop craftsmanship.
I wasn’t sure to expect when I first played An Eclipse of Ships, those old preconceptions still loomed. I knew the folks at BLURT are fans and that David J even played their SXSW day party in Austin. But as soon as the record’s first track “Dust in the Wind” started, I was intrigued and easily won over. Funded via Kickstarter, this record finds David J a mature singer-songwriter with a penchant for writing solid, singer-songwriter songs that are lush yet simple.
DOWNLOAD: “Hot Sheet Hotel,” “Visitation (Song for an Elegant Angel”), “Yokohama Blues”