The Cannanes are Australian living legends, striding mightily across the pages of world history books. They’ve put out more albums and singles than any other band in Australia (except maybe AC/DC, who’re just a bunch of Poms really anyway). What’s more, the records are all fantastic. With more than 20 years in the music business under their belt, they have become seasoned troopers, stayers in a world where you’re either this week’s news or last weeks trash.
Living The Dream, (either their 7th or their 8th album, depending on who you talk to), is the first proper Cannanes album since 1996’s The Cannanes, that self-titled classic of the modern age. A while between drinks you might say, but there’s no point explaining why, and when you listen to the music it’s like they’ve never been away. The Cannanes seem to own the patent on a perfect combination of melody, warmth, and a tickle of the funny bone now and then.
Things may have changed a little over the years. At one point the Cannanes seemingly couldn’t keep a beat, hold a note, or tell one end of a guitar from the other. This was a large part of their charm at the time, and saw them through those early years and records admirably. These days, though, it’s a whole other story. On Living The Dream the listener will marvel at the skill and aplomb with which The Cannanes present themselves to the world, still with all the personality and idiosyncratic appeal of yore.
Living The Dream is also the first Cannanes album released on an Australian label since 1989. It’s a sad state of affairs when a band is lauded in every country except its own. With records on overseas labels like K, Ajax, Slabco, Harriett, Yo-Yo, 555 and zillions of others, the band have earned themselves a fearsome international reputation. It has taken a visionary label like Chapter Music to accept the challenge to rehabilitate The Cannanes’ profile locally.
It’s about time someone in Australia stood up and said: "The Cannanes are a national treasure".