Only 600 copies of this Cd were printed a rare and
Four Hours Sleep is a Melbourne supergroup, of sorts,
with music by Bill McDonald (Rebecca's Empire, Frente,
Ultrasound), lyrics by Stephen Cummings, guest appearances
by Angie Hart and David McComb and the wildcard,
a thrilling cameo by ex-Orange Juice singer Edwyn Collins,
from Scotland. But More of Her, a one-off release with this
line up but a continuing project for the versatile McDonald,
is not as clearcut and linear as it seems.
With input also from brothers Peter (Black Sorrows,
Chris Wilson) and Dan (Blackeyed Susans) Luscombe
and with the grab-bag of singers and musicians
given the room to interpret the songs reasonably freely,
Four Hours Sleep in this instance has become a varied
musical palette with individuals clearly able to influence
the final mix at will.
Continuity, therefore, is a problem, but not a large one.
More of Her manages to run from a tear-soaked
but totally traditionalist duet between Cummings and Hart
("Stick To My Fingers") to a classic ballad about falling in love
("A Real Miracle", again featuring the voice of Hart)
to a clutch of fairly rollicking guitar-rock tunes. All, however,
display the subtlety and tendency toward sublime melody
that have distinguished both Cummings' and McDonald's
The Edwyn Collins connection emerged when McDonald
played bass for him on a promo-tour last year
(he's also more recently lent his bass sound to a forthcoming
Neneh Cherry album)
The result, "Don't You Ever Listen To Me", is classic pop in
the same way the top ten "A Girl Like You"
(and much of Gorgeous George) was, and confirms Collins'
standing as one of the finest vocalists of both the Eighties
(with Orange Juice) and, now, the Nineties.
But, in the end, More of Her, succeeds because of the
instinctive musical chemistry between McDonald and
Cummings, who have worked together for years, and, of course,
Cummings' bittersweet lyrics of urban joy and heartbreak.
In this way it could be seen as the Cummings album
you have when you don't have a Cummings album,
as he has always been an active collaborator within the
Melbourne scene. But it's not.
It's just a lowkey but accomplished supergroup.
Chris Johnston - Australian Rolling Stone March 1996