Jim Drew - If Guitars Could Speak Plainly

Published Sunday 15th April 2018
Jim Drew - If Guitars Could Speak Plainly
Jim Drew - If Guitars Could Speak Plainly

STYLE: Roots/Acoustic
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 169559-26638
LABEL: Independent

Reviewed by Lins Honeyman

If you've read Cross Rhythms' recent profile on this New York-based singer/songwriter, you might well want to investigate some of his back catalogue. In his long and varied career, New York-based singer/songwriter Jim Drew has performed both with a full band and as a solo artist and this release sees the experienced troubadour showcase his skills in the latter setting. Drew confidently tackles a handful of tracks from previous beefed-out albums - "I Will" from 2015's 'Perspective Shift' and the title track from 2002's 'Someone's Mona Lisa', for instance - whilst offering up embryonic versions of songs that would end up on his next Humble Soul album 'Manumission'. Lacking nothing of the passion of their full-blooded counterparts on account of Drew's attack mode guitar playing and his earthy vocals, acoustic versions of 'Manumission' tracks like "Here At The Crossroads", the satisfyingly sprawling "Where The River Meets The Road" and the lyrically sublime "He Cut Me Off" take their place as valid entries in the Jim Drew back catalogue with perhaps only the still good "Steppin' Outta The Game" lacking the bite of the matchless Humble Soul version. As ever, Drew deals with matters of faith in down-to-earth fashion with the likes of the cautionary "Monkay Room" and "Don't Let This Moment Pass You By" subtly telling of the freedom available through Jesus whilst "Snowblind" sees the songwriter reflect on his own journey. Drew brings the band back in for a great augmented take on the old chestnut "Will The Circle Be Unbroken" to close off a release that proves that it doesn't matter how many instruments are at hand if the songs are good enough.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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