COLONEL CHRIS HADFIELD
Space Sessions: Songs from a Tin Can
(Warner Music Canada)
By Keith Sharp
I am sure everyone is aware of the exploits of astronaut Chris Hadfield who, during his five months stint on the International Space Station, shot thousands of amazingly detailed photographs of the planet Earth, and during his spare time (which he had lots!) became the first spaceman to record a song, David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” while actually in orbit. The song and accompanying video clip caused a sensation, within the music industry and even earned plaudits from Mr Bowie himself. But what has to be considered here is that Hadfield is not a professional singer or songwriter, he performed a great stunt when he was in space – but to then release a full album really is a bridge too far. Had he chosen to release a five-song Ep featuring Space Oddity, a couple of his other space songs; “Feet Up”, “Space Lullaby” and “Ride That Lightning” and had he also inserted his collaboration with Bare Naked Ladies’ Ed Robertson,” I.S.S” – strangely absent from this release, Hadfield might have pulled off a decent recording. Unfortunately, he’s stretched out the session to feature 12 tracks, his voice is a little too thin to sustain the material and some of the songs just don’t cut it. I am sure Chris doesn’t have any aspirations about being a recording star, I am sure some of the musical contacts he has made were on his `bucket list ‘and I am sure the will make a great ambassador for this country in the future. But presenting him as a recording artist is a little bit of a stretch. An EP would have been fine.
Download: “Space Oddity, “Space Lullaby”