Thursday, January 15, 2009

Josh Woodward – Here Today


It’s a nice and enjoyable record. It sounds much more poppy and smoothen than other Josh’s records, but it’s not a disadvantage, just a surprise. When I’ve heard that it’s the very early set of his recordings I expected the sound to be rough and underproduced but I get the exact opposite. The songs are recorded in fairly good conditions, with a full arrangement, not just a songwriter and his/her guitar. The compositions are nice and melodic, though they do not have this Americana, dark folk atmosphere that one may sometimes find in his later records. Nonetheless I found some tunes may be my favourites for the next few weeks. One of the tracks I dig is Home Improvements, a little bit naive but sincere protest song about changing America into the only-for-the-rich state. The next one is Morning After, a very gentle story about all yesterday’s parties.
The album is really nice and melodic, and paradoxically, it may be it’s biggest flaw. The problem is that American songwriter/folk music went ages from the sounds Woodward presents. Sometimes, the album sounds more as Mr. Big than Palace Brothers or Mount Eerie, so if you look for more alternative approach you maybe disappointed. However, there are gems like Nothing in the Dark that get the LP spinning.
The cover is also a little bit too minimal. It does look like as if it was an album for songs that has just been left aside while recording better ones, which is not wholly true.
Generally it’s eight out of ten. It has its advantages, but there are also drawbacks.

Stay cool,


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