Wednesday, August 15, 2007

don't just stand there, open your eyes

I’m not entirely sure how I came across this lot, to be honest. Well, I say “this lot” – Ben’s Brother are (in a Cherry Ghost kind of way) one fella (Jamie Hartman) who, to avoid the “singer-songwriter” tag put the album out under the band name.

Possibly unfair on the other four. Who knows?

“Beta Male Fairytales” was released last week and managed a creditable number 24 spot in the album chart despite neither of their singles so far gaining (a) much airplay or (b) a top 40 position.

This album is, quite equivocally, a grower. At first, I thought the songs pretty much morphed into once gently lilting track, sung by someone from a Rod Stewart tribute act. However, after several plays (and despite the fact that Hartman does sound alarmingly like Rod on more than one occasion), I have grown to really love this record.

It’s a pretty generic, inoffensive sound whilst being simultaneously difficult to pigeonhole. Listening to it with your eyes closed, it’s a sound which makes you feel like you are in the window seat of a diner in middle America somewhere, drinking bottomless coffee whilst lazily watching the world go by. It’s a bit Counting Crows-y (other than the voice), I suppose, and the nicely crafted harmonica melodies have a Billy Joel-esque quality.

The standout tracks are the excellent opening song “Rise” and the first single “Let Me In”, both of which build to a really catchy chorus whilst avoiding being too sentimental or clichéd.

You can pick up the album on iTunes for £5.99 and in the shops for £5.98, and so I’d heartily recommend it. It won’t pull up any trees in terms of its originality, but after a few listens it’s a selection of brilliantly crafted songs and the perfect accompaniment for a glass of white in the garden with the sun going down.


2 Discussions:

Blogger bedshaped said...

I'm absolutely loving this album LB.
Great recommendation sir.
This is exactly what I wanted to get out of this place.

10:22 PM  
Blogger LB said...

glad you like it. It is a bloody good record...!

9:44 PM  

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