This week we have two new album reviews; The self titled album ‘Bon Iver’ by Bon Iver and ‘Before The Birds’ by Ben Glover. If you have any thoughts on either of the albums let us know
Ben Glover: Before The Birds
Ben Glover has been compelled to write songs since his mid-teens growing up in County Antrim, Northern Ireland when he was awoken and unsettled by Bob Dylan. Armed with a law degree from Queens University Belfast he put his legal ambitions on hold to pursue a career in music. That career got its start with Glover’s debut outing, The Week The Clocks Changed, produced by J.D. Foster (Calexico, Richmond Fontaine) and featuring guest appearances by A-list roots music artists including; Jim Lauderdale, Buddy Miller and Vince Gill. Through the Noise, through the Night, followed in 2009, which was produced by Neilson Hubbard (Kim Richey, Matthew Perryman Jones, Glen Phillips) and drew rave reviews and comparisons to the likes of Ryan Adams and Bruce Springsteen.
Relocating to Nashville in ‘09 — to summon the spirits of great songwriters that came before him; Hank, Willie, Cash and Kristofferson, Glover began penning new tunes with some of Music Row’s finest including acclaimed singer-songwriter Mary Gauthier. His second record Through the Noise, Through the Night was filled with soul-moving melodies that linger and stir.
Now comes his 2011 outing, Before the Birds, again produced by Neilson Hubbard and recorded in Nashville.
Glover’s sound has since evolved. After three albums, the singer songwriter has found his musical balance and has stepped up the mark by creating a sound that is self assured and confident in its structure, composition and overall feel.
The production although masterful, has an organic presence that sits very well with the singers Springsteenesque grovel. The album contains 10 tracks that sit evenly well aside each other. Stand out tracks include lead single ‘Trick of the light’, that one would assume can accompany any film landscape. It’s just crying out for a sync. Other tracks of note include: ‘I am with you’, ‘Any Other way’ and ‘the banjo lead Lockdown’ are just great.
This is Glover’s second album working with the producer Neilson Hubbard and it’s the most personal record he has made. This is what happens when a damn fine producer creates a trusting environment that allows the artist to throw out ideas and try new things. And it has been most successful here on this record. It’s easy to see how the trusting relationship afforded Ben the space to explore and make quiet possibly the best record of his career. Well worth the listen, and after one listen it just grows on you and becomes an old friend. A stunning album.
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