Joel Gragg - When The Dust Settles

Published Tuesday 17th February 2009
Joel Gragg - When The Dust Settles
Joel Gragg - When The Dust Settles

STYLE: Roots/Acoustic
RATING 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 53573-14922
LABEL: Independent

Reviewed by Lins Honeyman

The debut release from American singer/songwriter Joel Gragg is a joy to the ears. A relative unknown, Gragg has produced a piece of work that embodies the gritty realism of faith in today's America amidst an ingenious organic backdrop of blues and rock. Despite getting off to a slightly shaky start vocally with "All My Life", Gragg is on top form with the likes of the defiant "You Won't Keep Me Down" and the politically aware "Patriotic Apathy" which reference Springsteen and Tom Petty as influences. Feedback induced guitar solos and radio soundbites are slotted into songs whilst Gragg employs a sitar in the psychedelic title track to make this a rollercoaster ride of sonic surprise that marks Gragg's ability as a producer as well as a writer and performer. Highlights include the glorious gospel stomp "Redemption Draws Nigh", complete with handclap rhythm and swamp guitar, whilst the mandolin-driven "I Had A Dream" showcases Gragg's appetite for diversity. Elsewhere, the social comment of "Lack Of Love", with some vocal help from wife Beth, and the tender reminiscence of "I Still Remember Us" display Gragg's lyrical worth. A captivating musical feast from an artist who deserves wider recognition.

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.

Interested in reviewing music? Find out more here.

Be the first to comment on this article

We welcome your opinions but libellous and abusive comments are not allowed.

We are committed to protecting your privacy. By clicking 'Send comment' you consent to Cross Rhythms storing and processing your personal data. For more information about how we care for your data please see our privacy policy.