Bill Botting and The Two Drink Minimums – Graceland

• “Graceland” set to a picture of the housing album. Thanks to Bill Botting – Topic.

8.3 “Fantastic Indie from Australia”

From his album “Better Friends” released in March, 2017.

I was very sad to see London-based Allo Darlin’ split in 2016, but I guess you have to be philosophical about these things; we got a brilliant three album run from them (2010-2014) and I gave some serious consideration to declaring their version of Darren Hayman’s “Wu Tang Clan” (2011) to be the greatest indie song of all-time, so I really mustn’t grumble.

The amicable split gave affable bassist-mustachio Bill Botting a bit more time and space to work on the Two Drink Minimums (essentially his solo project) which he’d begun in 2015. Bill plays regular guitar and piano on the album and his drafted core for this one consists of fellow ex Allo Darlin’ bandmate Paul Rains (steel guitar), Jonny Helm (drums) from The Wave Pictures, Tom Wade (bass) from Owl & Mouse and his sister, Hannah Botting (vocals) also from Owl & Mouse.

The cover of “Graceland” came from hearing Willie Nelson’s version while waiting for the rest of the band to arrive for the first rehearsal. And what a fantastic job they made of it – giving Paul Simon’s esteemed 1986 production a run for its money. I’ve always loved the piece, all at once African and Country, typical of Simon’s thirst for adventure. It’s a song which offers hope after the despair; Graceland might well be the new dawn.

Speaking to For The Rabbits, Bill explained about his very own new personal era:

The irony is not lost on me that I moved to London to make music and moved back to Australia the day before my début record was released. I went out with a bang though – our last show was one of the funnest nights I’d had in a decade. When I started making the record I really had no idea what the next year had in store and the decision to move to Australia didn’t get made until, really only a few months before the album was released. And while I don’t expect to be permanently living in London anytime soon, I don’t feel like that book is finished. I still have so much of me left in that hemisphere I don’t think it ever will be. Y’know that Paul Allen song “I Still Call Australia Home”? I kind of have the opposite thing going on.

Heard on Rocker’s January 2017 show on Dandelion Radio.

Get it at Bandcamp.

2019-07-04

Clockwise from the top: Bill Botting, Tom Wade, Paul Rains, Jonny Helm, Hannah Botting

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