We won’t try to explain the sound of this album to you, the artists’ names alone, along with the killer Ben Brown album art should do all the heavy lifting for you. What we will say is that Until We Darken Your Doorstep is a concept album in the truest sense. The songs trawl the depths of murder, betrayal, love won, love lost and love on the run, sung by two partners in crime that are the loves of each other’s lives.
So, just who are the stars of our show? Mechanic by day, guitar slinger by night, Crank Williams (aka Jeff Pope) is one of life’s great journeymen. You may recognise him from 90’s cowpunk legends, Deadwood 76 or in his current role in legendary Sydney group, Spurs for Jesus. Patsy Decline (Louise Tegart) is not only Crank’s musical soulmate but his partner in real life as well.
Here’s the story… in late 2019, having made the decision to become a full-time musical act, Crank and Patsy happened upon an antiques store. As the pair perused the tiny establishment, a small, early 70’s reel-to-reel tape machine peeked out from behind some dusty books on a doily-covered table. It appeared to be a relic from another time, wedged deep behind a wall of history, kind of like Excalibur. Something told them both that they had to extract it.
Upon returning home, the play button of this mysterious machine was depressed. The 1/4 inch tape began to hiss and crackle briefly before revealing three darkly beautiful voices and one acoustic guitar. According to Crank, “for a split second it was like all the air had been sucked out of the room, before exploding back in like a freight train of inspiration. It was clear in that moment that these recordings had to become the glue that would both tie together and weave throughout the songs that would make up our first album. Many nights were spent wondering who these voices belonged to. The not knowing only heightened the intrigue and fuelled the dream.”
That dream has been realised in the form of Until We Darken Your Doorstep and it’s those mystery voices that form the album’s connective tissue, intertwined with some killer Crank & Patsy originals, including State’s Most Wanted Man (the lead single from the record), Joni Mitchell and Christmas on The Run, plus killer covers of Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazelwood’s Summer Wine and My Love Forevermore by Swiss rockabilly legends, Hillbilly Moon Explosion.
Crank is now no longer just a gun for hire. With Patsy by his side, they’re an unstoppable force of nature. Until We Darken Your Doorstep is just the beginning.
Until We Darken Your Doorstep is out November 25 on CD, Vinyl and Digital.