By Marley

Dan Patlansky really doesn’t need to be introduced if you are a regular reader of the Small Town Music Blog’s website. Dan is certainly one of our best export in the music industry, he is a popular artist to watch from South Africa to the UK. And with all his tours, family life and more, he just released his brand new studio album “Perfection Kills”.

The cover is pretty cool, different to a blues album. With neon pink and a family portrait that is not quite the norm is what stands out when you hold the album in your hands.

Perfection Kills” was recorded at Scherzo Productions, a recording studio in Dan’s hometown of Pretoria. Dan chose Scherzo because he wanted to make a different sounding record from his last two albums and he felt Scherzo supported his vision. All the songs on the album were recorded and engineered by Jaco Naudé at Scherzo Productions, mixed by Stefan Swart in South Africa and mastered by Pete Lyman at Infrasonic Mastering U.S.A.

Dan produced the album himself, something he hasn’t done in years. “I learnt so much working with Theo Crous, who was the producer on my previous two albums, ‘Dear Silence Thieves’ and ‘Introvertigo’. I worked on pre-production and songwriting with Theo on a couple of the tracks for ‘Perfection Kills’ and applied what I learnt to the recording and production process of the album.” says Dan.

Going what Dan says about the inspiration for the album how he wanted the sound and of course to perform the songs live I needed to put in my own words. Since I am the listener (and fan) thus I have to bring my own honesty to Mr Patlansky’s latest release.

“Johnny” is your classic Dan solo guitar track with Dan’s voice as good as your morning coffee. It’s a foot tap song, the riffs that will get stuck in your head all day long. The song is about a kid who had a challenging upbringing which has turned him into a bit of a tough guy.

“Never long enough” with the keys intro and then Dan falls in with the guitar. It’s the kind of song I would love to see live. It makes you swing your hips a little. I personally think Dan’s music is made for women. And then after the chorus, the song stops with just the keys and then it starts again. Then again this song about his times spent with his wife and how it’s never long enough between tours.

“Mayday” oh man, this song takes my mind to tour on the coast of the Cape province. When it’s a bit glooming and the sea looks wild. But your heart seems to be quiet. Dan’s voice is soft on this track, not by volume but it brings that peace I’m talking about. It’s a song I will play on a cloudy day. When your heart is broken, this song is for you. It’s almost got a Cat Stevens/Elvis Castello feeling to it. Love it. One of my favourites.

“Too Far Gone” oh my soul what a kick-ass song! It’s in your face with the guitar as intro and the wha-wha pedal sound during the song. This is rock and roll. Modern rock. Hell, this song should be on radio people. This what Dan says the song is about “With the annihilation of the environment, famine, war, greed and human stupidity, the world is becoming scarier every day. Are we too far gone?”

“Judge a man” here we go, back to Dan’s blues roots. This is how I got to know Dan with the slow beats of drums and bass. I can see Dan play his guitar as the guitar and keys meet each other perfectly. This is the song that the older Dan fans will appreciate. And teach anyone new to the classic Dan blues sound. The lyrics are also the old kind of blues song that you remember BB King, Joe Lee Hooker and those would write. I can go on and on how the lyrics relate to me and what I do for a living but oh, just listen. Well done Dan, this is a beautiful song. And funny enough this songs about moaning of the previous girls Dan has dated. It’s not easy being a musician’s partner.

“Junket Man” I get the idea that this song was written on tour. Well, this is what I get from the lyrics and the beat. Which also reminds me of my time I use to travel with bands. You kinda fresh still and yet you are tired. But not too tired yet. There is too much to enjoy right now. Love the solo in this. A Junket man is someone who travels for their livelihood.

“iEyes” can we talk again about how cool Dan is with his talents which includes production? This song is grooving, loving every aspect of the song itself.  Dan explains “Our complete addiction to living life through a screen, not noticing the high res world all around us.”

“Shake the cage” yet another classic Dan signature. This song is for all those that are afraid to make a move. That can change your life. “Don’t be afraid, shake the cage”. About looking over your life, see what has changed. What can you change? Moral of the song – don’t be afraid to make changes. “I believe in the theory that life works in 7-year cycles. This song is about embracing change and actively changing your mindset every now and then, even if it means stepping out of your comfort zone.” – Dan Patlansky

“My dear boy” is written for Dan’s s son, Jack. The message is so beautiful. Take care of his big sister, live your life in the best way. I smile during this song because dads need to be the example for their sons. And just like little girls are daddy’s princesses, sons needs to be the princes in their father’s lives. The sweetest song on the album.

“Dog Day” is the first single off the album. The video was directed by Dizzy Khaki, one of the videographers making waves in the South African music industry. Love to jam to this song in my car while I’m stuck in traffic. You sing it along after listening to twice or more. Such a connection to this beat. Loving it. There is a radio edition to the song as well. So what are you waiting for playlist editors? Cat cut your tongues. Play the song. It’s a song that our first world problems are nothing compared to what many people have to deal with.

This is a new sound with the keys now permanently on the band tour bus. “Perfection Kills” is very descriptive of Dan’s work. And this album is one for the collection box. If you are a new fan of Dan, this is a great album to start with and work your way back. Dan certainly takes you on a journey with “Perfection Kills”. If there is one album you have to buy this year, then it’s “Perfection Kills”.

Online buy it at Apple Music / iTunes South Africa or visit Dan’s website for more information.

You can follow Dan on social media as well as to see the latest tour dates, inside information and more;




Marley is the founder and owner of Small Town Music. Born and bred in Nelspruit aka Nelsparta. Marley loves music (rock being a firm favourite), tattoos, festivals, animals and South Africa. Self-taught photographer and writer.