Jack Cade was an Irishman who led a failed rebellion against King Henry VI in 1450. Cade’s modern day namesake has fronted a band called The Everyday Sinners since 2011. He is not a British revolutionary and actually sounds for all the world like a grizzled American holed up in a shotgun shack on the wrong side of the tracks. In fact he hails from North Kent and currently lives in relative comfort by the sea in Brighton.
There is little that obviously distinguishes his solo releases (of which this is his second) from the full band albums. Two members of the group, Ben Cox-Smith (dobro) and Chris Davies (keyboards), play on this record, and it has the feel of a collaborative effort rather than a one-man project.
Cade’s gravelly baritone would be well suited to songs of raw-edged nihilism yet these ten new tunes present a man on the side of those who are more sinned against than sinning. Despite sounding like whiskey and cigarettes form the basis of his diet, he errs more towards tender than tough.
Four Letter Word proves that he takes the power of love seriously and Hana Maria’s lyrical fiddle-playing on this track adds to the heart softening effect.
Moreover, Cade’s empathy for those down on their luck is evident in the opening song - He Lies On His Side; the tale of an “outside thinker” trying to find a direction in life.
The compassionate side of his character doesn’t mean that Cade views the world through rose-tinted spectacles. Far from it. He reflects bleakly that “life ain’t nothing more than Dust and on When You Come Runninghe likens a woman’s charms to a threadbare sofa.
Two full-on rockers - Little Bag Of Tricks and She Got Something To Say - face up to issues of lies and truth; the dangers of the first and challenges of the second.
But Sunshine King shows Cade’s black humour and pragmatism: “I wanna be the wisest of fools so I will know I don’t know it all” while Movin’ On cautions against getting bogged down by past regrets.
The album title comes from the final track Stripped with wordplay contrasting the animal-like strength of “bear bones” with the stripped back “bare bones” that make us all too human.
All told, Cade is not a man you’d wish to get on the wrong side of but I’d wager that beneath the macho bluster he's a big softy at heart. In bear terms, he's more Paddington than grizzly.
Jack Cade’s website