Release Date: Feb 21, 2012
Record label: Communicating Vessels
When Steve Kilbey of the Church joined forces with Jeffrey Cain of Remy Zero to form Isidore in 2004, the collaboration proved as fruitful and inspiring as it was unexpected. The eponymous album was an almost-perfect set of auditory paintings, ones that swirled together Kilbey’s baritone poetry with Cain’s studio wizardry in unforgettable pastels. After eight long years, along comes Life Somewhere Else to prove that the magic of Isidore was no accident.
The second collaborative album between Steve Kilbey and Jeffrey Cain follows in the vein of their first, with seven years' time feeling like the blink of an eye. In part this is due to Kilbey's vocals retaining their sense of calm, reflective regret as always; from his opening words on the appropriately sea shantey-esque sway of "The Privateer," it really couldn't be mistaken for anyone else. But there's also the sense of Cain's elaborate, often lovely arrangements, something that suits Kilbey well without exactly sounding like the Church or a knock-off of the same -- referencing "The Privateer" again, hearing how he carefully lets the main arrangement build, hold, then drop away in a slow conclusion is a master class in elegance.
Steve Kilbey, vocalist and founding member of Australian first-wavers the Church, may be the voice of Isidore, but it's clear that Jeffrey Cain is the force behind Isidore. Guitarist of recently reformed group Remy Zero, Cain crafted this musical persona when he paired with Kilbey for 2004 LP Isidore. The band's proper follow-up, Life Somewhere Else, allows the Church frontman to stretch-out, properly utilizing his haunted vocals on tracks like gloomy, Dead Can Dance-like dirge "Life Somewhere Else" and the brooding "Song for the Moon," anchored by the sampled beat from late Remy Zero drummer (and former Isidore contributor) Gregory Slay.