This tape, released on the Roll Over Rover label (co-run by Sean McCann) is a half hour of extremely sad, slow and lonely bedroom indie-folk. Old Softy appears just to be one Dave McPeters, who I assume is the one singing and playing guitar, although it says the tape was recorded with Sean McCann, who must be the one making the occasional droney sounds very distantly in the background. Regardless, it sounds like it was recorded in a big empty room, possibly on a really dark, cloudy day. It seems like something that should be unbearably tough to sit through unless you're in a hopelessly depressed mood (which I usually am not, and try to stay away from these days).
Somehow, though, for some unexplainable reason, even though this tape reminds me of feelings I'd rather not have and moods I'd rather not be in, thereby making it not very likely that this would be my first choice for listening material in any given sitution, somehow while it's on I actually enjoy it quite a fair amount. The big room echo helps the vocals not be so intelligible, and even though Sean McCann's backing (which sounds like an organ at some points and a guitar or possibly a banjo at others) is extremely quiet and sparse, it does add another level to the music that does elevate it a bit. It's very sad and lonely sounding to be sure, but in an odd way it does put me in some sort of peaceful state of mind. I guess the effect this tape has on me is that it makes me think that sometimes we find ourselves in situations that we wouldn't want ourselves to be in, yet somehow we see the elements of truth and beauty in them, and we get something positive out of it.
That said, I'm on my second straight listen for this review, and I'm really getting the urge to put on some happy hardcore or something just to get out of this... whatever it is that I'm feeling right now... 7/10 -- Paul Simpson (4 June, 2009)