Wednesday, March 05, 2008

New City And Colour - an acoustic folk reverie

Artist: City & Colour (Dallas Green)
Album: Bring Me Your Love
Label: Dine Alone Records
Release Date: February 12, 2008
Rating: 8 out of 10

In the complete opposite vane of Dallas Green’s Alexisonfire incarnation, City And Colour releases a second solo album, Bring Me Your Love.

This album is radiating of velvety acoustic authenticity, exceeding the 2005 effort of “Sometimes”, Dallas Green delivers an acoustic-folk reverie that’s bursting with his heartfelt narratives of love, loss and the human condition.

Along with that, the instrumentation is more sophisticated - burrowing down and lifting off with echoing string the odd whiff of Bob Dylan inspired harmonica and banjo. Bring Me Your Love is unpretentious, trustworthy folk-roots based and without a song to dislike. The immediate loves would include “Waiting”, “Constant Knot” and “Sleeping Sickness”, which begins inconspicuously before the tempo is carried up by a hand-clapping chorus, then the recognizable vocal of Gord Downey swaggers through the third verse. Downey’s cameo demonstrates stirring approval of this young Saint Catherine’s talent.

Listening to the City And Colour recordings I feel as though I’m back in the open air of the Malkin Bowl amphitheatre, beguiled by the purity of Dallas Green’s voice and washed away by gentle sashaying guitar. The 2-minute opening track Forgive Me immediately gives that off and as un-commercial as City And Colour is, Jack Johnson might aspire to cover “Against The Grain” or “The Girl” in a live set.

The order of the album is part of Green’s great intuitiveness. Songs fall into place effortlessly and the final track “As Much As I Ever Could” is as soft as silk, transporting the line taken for the album title, bring me your love, to a diaphanous lullaby - until that is, its abrupt end and your iTunes library barrels in The Clash’s Combat Rock.

-- Stephanie Kiernan

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