Pete Dello “Into Your Ears”

Into Your Ears

Pete Dello was the original leader of the Honeybus, a short-lived but wonderful English baroque-pop group who only managed to release one album in 1970 (finally reissued in 2008-). For all the gems available on compilations like Honeybus At Their Best and She Flies Like A Bird: The Anthology, fans of their brand of summery, rootsy pop couldn’t be truly satisfied without an ear on Dello’s fine solo efforts.

Comparisons to the Beatles are somewhat unavoidable, from the next-level songwriting to the double-tracked voice, chamber orchestra production, but assertions of cheap imitation are unacceptable. Dello’s album is a pretty mix, most songs led with a clean acoustic guitar or piano, flavoring the sound with modest string and brass sections. This is where the record gets its baroque tag, but at times the music, like Honeybus, approaches a country-folk-rock sound. Tracks like I’m A Gambler illustrate that perfect mix of rural rock and sunshine pop, blessed with some especially tasteful percussion. The trick to the record’s charm may be the Nilsson inspired vocal treatments, either Dello’s unassuming lead or the lilting vocal turns and harmony parts.

I wouldn’t call it a perfect record, but it gets pretty close and grows to be very solid. Pete scored with his first Honeybus single, I Can’t Let Maggie Go, and gets a chance at a full showcase with Into Your Ears. Only a couple tracks push the British camp too much for my ears, so take note if you’re fond of skipping sillier tracks. If you’re looking for gems, you’ll be right on target.

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“It’s The Way”

Also, don’t miss a generous lot of Honeybus-related mp3s at Colin Hare’s official Honeybus homepage.

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  • phil_spector

    be careful!!!
    there is a slight problem with the hanky panky records, i’ve bought them the CD through paypal, and nothing, they deliver nothing. And their email adress is invalid, so impossible to contact them about anything!!!

    to bad beacuse elsewhere the CD’s worth 50dollars

  • ragnarb

    I just unloaded dozens of boxes of old albums going back to mid sixties. My two teenage daughters hammered me until I set up my old stereo and turntable. They love all the “old” music. It got me to surfing the web looking for infromation about many of the bands. This AM I decided to research the local, regioanl bands from my neck of the woods in the minwest. My buds, and I, used to make the drive to Chicago regularly to visit the Kinetic Playground and have a true fondness for the music born in in Chicago. This is a great site, and I must say, one of the most interesting and eclectic, I’ve come across. It’s worth a regular visit to capture a bit of the old time and space.

  • Robert Anderson, NY,NY

    The Honeybus email is invalid…anyone have a way to get the CD..? Thanks!

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