Reviewed by Tony Cummings
Brian's notes in the CD booklet reveal the anatomy of an album: "This record was made in Belfast, Nashville and Eastbourne. It started life as a collection of demos before moving to Nashville in October 2003, where the plan was to create master tracks from scratch. However, the producer there (Phil Madeira) thought it would be a shame to lose the spirit of the original recordings so decided to add his parts and those of his musician friends to what was already produced. So, after a few months, the songs were sent to England where another producer (Paul Wilkinson) was waiting to begin work on mixing. Soon the files were opened and decoded and their contents spilled onto the desktop of his Apple Mac G4. Proceeding cautiously, Paul carefully massaged and cajoled the disparate elements to take it to the next stage (in other words, he added some banjo and drums). Then I stuck my vocals and guitars over the parts that needed fixing and messed about for a while until I was happy to hand it all back to Paul for final mixing." The happy result is compelling, rootsy, Dylanesque music, full of guts and passion. Maybe there are one or two too many songs about losing your girl ("Wrong Wrong Wrong" makes most maudlin country weepers sound like a barrel of laughs by comparison) but Brian's winning ways with memorable images ("There's a beer bottle and it's lyin' empty/And it marks the place you sat") and telling ways with narrative songs, like on the haunting "The Time We Lost The Car", not to mention his engaging, gutsy, passionate vocals and delightful suck-and-blow harmonica, lap steel, Hammond organ, et al.
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