Brian In The Museum – Good Works And Deeds
Nick Hornby says that as a kid, he only used to listen to music that was made using the heavy sounds of distorted electric guitars. Once some of the more sophisticated songwriting works started catching his attention, he tried to ignore them. He feared that it was bad music trying to pull a trick on him.
As someone who daily listens to the kind of music Mr Hornsby has slowly distanced himself from, I must admit that I occasionally feel the same way. I’m naturally wary about accepting the teaching of a singer that will not scream his words out at me. At least monthly, I must test my loyalties to Slayer and the Germs.
With that being said, Brian Halloran’s work is remarkable in its elegance. Its foundation is the songwriting of artists like Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, or Squeeze, lovers and hard-thinkers, but certainly not fighters.
In typical fashion for the musical project Brian in the museum, Good Works And Deeds is a very well-crafted guitar tune, with words and melodies tailored carefully and best appreciated upon repeated listens. Yes, sometimes music made without distorted guitars is looking out for your best interest.
Harpers – Static
Harpers are likely to get stuck with a retro-rock label attached to them, but this hardly tells the whole story about the band judging by Static. Yes, they like their rock n’ roll old, but not musty. They’re on the lookout for only the finest melodies and song arrangements that someone or other may have misplaced.
The single Static is, first and foremost, and incredibly orchestrated work that will get listeners to strain their ears to hear all the gentle piano, bass, or drum parts that add the frosting to a well-written soft-rock tune.
The lyrics themselves speak about beliefs or lack of them, as the singer narrates a character’s decision to leave a religion that had sheltered him throughout their life. The contrast between the terror and loss of identity of the words, and the gentle, beautiful nature of the music, makes it a fascinating listen.