Cory Brown - Days In A Life
- Artist: Cory Brown
- Album: Days In A Life
- Year of Release: 2012
- ME Rating:
- Reviewed by: charlesmartel on 2012-08-29
I have always admired that musical creature known as the singer-songwriter. As someone who cannot sing and whose attampts at writing music were severely limited by an inability to distinguish musical forms, I was always in awe of those who could write their own songs and then go and sing them. My hat is therefore most definitely off to Cory Brown.
However, all too often there is little to distinguish the individual singer-songwriter from his or her contemporaries. Given that not everyone can be a Bob Dylan or a Billy Bragg (to name but two) the singer-songwriter really needs something distinctive to make him stand out above the crowd. Otherwise, he is just going to sink back into the mass of James Taylor and Jackson Brown clones who seem to comprise the singer-songwriter cadre. Talented, yes. But never enough to be truly memorable.
I would not say that Cory Brown is one such, but there are times when it seems that his album, Days in a Life is sneaking that way. Take, for instance, "Saturday". At times, it sounds engaging and original but it seems to go on too long for its own good. This is in stark contrast to the rich guitar sounds of the track which immediately follows it - "Her Eyes" - which sounds as if the Eagles and Dan Fogelberg had a collision and Cory Brown emerged from the wreckage as the complete package.
All of which throws me into confusion. Brown has that familiar unplaceably American nasal accent which he takes forward into his songs and is inevitably a component of the harmonies. Musically, the album is full of well-played, well-written songs, largely acoustic guitars with electric ones for backing and the occasional slide guitar. In terms of lyrics, there is a sort of wistful quality which seems borne of playing music while sitting on a fence at the edge of some autumnal wood somewhere. In short, it is all what you would expect it to be. Could that be the problem?
Don't get me wrong. There is nothing here that would send me screaming for the off button on my CD player. But then again there is not much which would send me dashing for the replay button either. It is good. But that is all. I suspect Cory Brown has a lot more stuff within him and this I would like to hear. But while a pleasant listen, Days in a Life is not distinctive enough to find a regular slot in my musical landscape.
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