Pipe and Slippers Club

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A review from Pipe and Slippers Club by Alex Markham

This self-released album (Bentley’s third, according to the accompanying press
release) demonstrates a songwriting competence lacking in much of the MOR
currently clogging up the Radio 2 playlist. Bentley appears to have a diverse range of
influences and, although this album clearly falls under the wider banner of folk, it is
difficult to pigeonhole his style. Opener ‘This Old Town’ kicks off the album in an
upbeat fashion, but by no means sets the tone for the whole record. Title track
‘Entropy’, although a soaring and uplifting effort, seems to borrow heavily from The
Proclaimers’ ‘Sunshine on Leith’. The strongest song on the album, ’Worm’, clocks
in at a mere one minute and forty-three seconds. This seems like a huge waste, as this
cheery Simon and Garfunkel-esque ditty has great potential for further development.
The lyrical content of Entropy is decidedly angry, which seems at odds with the
nature of the music. ‘Hurt You’ is particularly bitter (‘You pissed me off, you say
we’re done/You say it’s my fault when you brought it on’). The genre flirtations
aside, it is ultimately Bentley’s voice that carries the album. Whilst certainly a more
interesting prospect than Newton Faulkner and all his ilk, he would do well to
consolidate his influences and find his niche.

Alex Markham

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