The Slow Crack
by Steve Kilbey


The Slow Crack finds Kilbey tapping into his warped pop sensibility and—with an arsenal of guitars, synths, drum machine, and even some horns here and there—creating perhaps the most upbeat record of his career. The hallucinatory lyrics and psychedelic feel remain, of course.

"The Slow Crack," Church vocalist/bassist Kilbey's third solo release sounds so much like early Church, it's apparent that up to "Starfish" Kilbey was The Church. "Transduction" [sic] and "A Favourite Pack of Lies" are as charming as "The Unguarded Moment" was on the group's 1982 debut. "Consider Yourself Conquered," perhaps the best song here, is a quiet, tenderly ominous ballad in the same vein as "Don't Open the Door to Strangers." Kilbey plays all the instruments here, relying heavily on jangly guitars, intelligence and repetition. However there's not enough verve to distinguish "Slow Crack" from an average Church record.

Steve Kilby [sic]
Rough Trade Records

[Following a review of "Hex"]

Less ethereal — positively driving, in fact, compared to "Hex" — is "The Slow Crack." Kilbey's latest solo effort displays the best qualities of the Church, without the lapses into self-indulgence.

[Donnette] Thayer makes a brief appearance, on "Transaction," but this is really Kilbey's album: bright, melodious, heartfelt. Fine choices include "A Favourite Pack of Lies," "Fireman," "A Minute Without You" and the aforementioned "Transaction."

Together, "Hex" and "The Slow Crack" ought to fit in quite well in the record collection of devout Church followers.

Anyone out there who doesn't know Steve Kilby is the lead singer/bassist for the Church—shame on you. [Shame on you for misspelling "Kilbey" - fip] My response to past solo efforts from various members of the Church hasn't been all that enthusiastic. This album, however, left my turntable for any long period of time, as I'm compelled to hear it again and again. The songs foster a moody, dream-like response (not surprising, since Kilby is a neo-surrealist) much the same way Blurred Crusade or Seance did. In fact, this could easily be a (pre-Heyday) Church album. Tracks to listen to include "Transaction," "Favourite Pack Of Lies," "Something That Means Something" and "Surrealist Woman Blues." Side two isn't quite as obvious as side one, so spend some time with it will ya?

"The Slow Crack" begins where "Unearthed" ended. Similar production, but with a brighter and more colorful mood. After two EPs it's clear that Kilbey's expertise and confidence making albums have grown.

The CD reissue is wonderful 'cause it has as a bonus the This Asfalt Eden single and very interesting liner notes from the master. The only black spot is the cover which has been replaced by a zoom in which Kilbey's "parts" are cut off.

A wonderful collection of mysterious, haunting and psychedelic tracks. Very mellow and gripping vocals combined with atmospherics and instrumentation. John Lennon and Pink Floyd style of music. Very trippy indeed. the cover....

I remember while I was listening to it, I meditated over the front cover and I was not surprised to obtain a marijuana leaf after some minutes....

a timeless production...