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My Friend The Chocolate Cake
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Reviews of Edinburgh Festival Dates

While almost unknown over here MFTCC’s unclassifiable mix of lush melodic textures, punchy beats and powerfully emotive song writing has made them very hot news in their native Australia. Ringing the changes on a cornucopia of instruments, the six - piece carve out a hitherto unchartered territory between the Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Crowded House, Michael Marra and Chuck Berry. Honest. And it works - David Bridie’s dusty edged vocals backed by big rolling piano and sweetly swelling strings or wending their measured way through lean, darkly haunting ballads; gorgeously coloured instrumentals, lavishly decorated with jazzy and classical tinges; the odd Hungarian wedding dance; their range is far too big for this wee space, but it’s a memorably delicious melange.

Festival Music
By Sue Wilson
The List
August 1996

My Friend The Chocolate Cake - This lot are huge in their native OZ but relatively unknown here. Not for long. Word of their blend of well crafted melodies, shimmering pop and heartfelt vocals is spreading rapidly. See them now so that you can be all smug and superior to your pals when they’re double-chocolate here too. #1 Music Attraction

The List
16 - 22 August 1996
Top 20 Festival Attractions

It melts on your tongue. A fluffy, spongy sound with a thick, dark coating of full-cream cello and a rich aftertaste of exquisite violin. The acoustic six piece MFTCC are as popular as Mars Bars in Australia, yet this was only their second serving in the Northern Hemisphere. Like last year’s Fringe hit, Tap Dogs, this is another Aussie import that is reeking of class. Nothing too loud or obnoxious here. Pianist and singer David Bridie is a sensitive soul, embarrassed by his work being featured on the popular soap "Home and Away". His writing on the Gossip is sparse and tingling. But it is the frontline pairing of Helen Mountfort, cello, and Hope Csutoros, violin, which is Thornton’s deluxe selection. With guitar, mandolin and drums firmly in a supporting role, Csutoros, drawing on the Hungarian gypsy idiom, is technically and emotionally attached to her fiddle. She shows a dazzling brilliance, particularly in the Hungarian Wedding Dance. If you want to start your evening on an up-beat, where you are guaranteed excellence, this band is an essential part of Festival 96.

4 Star Review
The Scotsman
By Kenny Kemp
12 August 1996

Don’t be taken in by the charm of the airily atmospheric overture. Before the set’s over and your free cake’s eaten, Ozzie’s directness materializes and fools are not suffered gladly. In between times much happens that is indeed charming. David Bridie, front person of this Melbourne sextet, has a dryly expressive voice. His songs, punctuated by gypsy dance tunes and violinists deft turns, embody love, gossip, and mid-life crises and are sufficiently light to feature in Home and Away apparently, but sufficiently intelligent and imaginatively arranged to make an hour pass quickly.

The Herald Edinburgh
August 14 1996