Sunday, 17 August 2014

The Hat Club: Boo Hewerdine: September 27th

Barry Cross is a very clever man.
He designs the CD covers for Miracle Mile and my solo stuff.
He's also doing the posters for our music venue The Hat Club, which is hosted in the bar of my local Squash Club in Beaconsfield. 

As you can see we have the stupendous Boo Hewerdine playing on September 27th. 
If you'd like to come and see Boo in an intimate setting, please get your name on the club clipboard asap.
£10 will reserve you a place.
If you are a non member and are reading this, please just email me for details at trev@lisacottage.demon.co.uk

Boo is rightfully regarded by those in the know as one of this county's finest singer song-writers.
I've been following his career since I first saw him as a spotty youth (me, not him), playing with his band The Bible. 
One of his songs in particular is probably responsible for me wanting to be in a band.
Yes, he's is to blame for my wasted youth... thanks Boo!
That song was 'Graceland'.


Boo has since gone on to develop a successful solo career and as a songwriter for other artists, notably Eddie Reader, for whom he wrote the gorgeous 'Patience of Angels'. 
Here's his take:

For more info on Boo Hewerdine please have a look at his website here.
It's going to be a cracking night.
Don't miss out...

Please also take note of other future Hat Club presentations:
October 18th: David Bridie
November 8th: Peter Bruntnell
December 13th: Raevennan Husbandes

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Lovesong: Gramercy Arms: Beautiful Disguise

I'm loving this.














Gramercy Arms are a Supergroup, a collaborative that's masterminded by songwriter/producer Dave Derby (left).
Their 2nd album is 'The Seasons of Love' and features a magnificently motley crew; the likes of Lloyd Cole, Joan Wasser (Joan As Police Woman), Tanya Donelly (Belly, Throwing Muses), Matthew Caws (Nada Surf), Kendall Meade (Sparklehorse), Claudia Gonson (Magnetic Fields), Doug Gillard (Guided By Voices), Erin Moran (A Girl Called Eddy), Renee LoBue (Elk City), Kay Hanley (Letters To Cleo) and others.
The new single from the album 'Beautiful Disguise' features Lloyd Cole and Joan Wasser, and comes with a gem of a video, replete with sonorous shadows and moody menace.
The album will be the soundtrack to my weekend.
You?


Sunday, 3 August 2014

Toronto Tim Says: GUILTY PLEASURES - JENNY LEWIS - "SHE"S NOT ME" & "HEAD UNDERWATER"

Here's where I hand the page over to the enthusiasms of Toronto's very own Tim Patrick:

A couple of sweet pieces of ear candy by Jenny Lewis. Reminds me of Fleetwood Mac, circa Tango In The Night. She has a new release called "The Voyager" produced by Ryan Adams, who does a fine job providing an accessible west-coast 70/80's style pop sheen to the entire album. Fittingly, Jeff "Skunk" Baxter of Steely Dan/Doobies fame lays down some tasty guitar work on my favorite track, "She's Not Me".  Benmont Tench of Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers lends his always excellent keyboard talents & Beck Hansen also makes a nice cameo on "One Of The Guys".

I must say that I've never been a fan of the quirky brand of indie-rock Lewis or her band Rilo Kiley produced. She always seemed to be in self-loathing, angsty chic mode & wallowing in the sleazy LA cesspool of kinky sex and dope. Except for a couple of references to blow-jobs, coke and a menage a trois she's managed to tone down the tawdriness this time. And whilst the lyrical focus is on confessional middle-aged gal angst, the ever-catchy variety of pop-songwriting musical styles she adopts has won me over. 
Slick pop music from a decidedly female POV - a guilty pleasure for sure, but it's summertime and I'm liking it anyway

SHE"S NOT ME: 

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Palestine: Discuss

"To educate a man in mind and not in morals is to educate a menace to society." 
Theodore Roosevelt

Mmm. I seem to be getting tied into rants, raves and discussions regarding events in Palestine.
In London we are physically distant, dispassionate, disinterested, displaced but… I truly want to understand so that I can have an informed opinion and therefore make some kind of informed comment. This surely is how things will change. Once we have the tools to dissect the dissimulations, the misinformation, the rhetoric, the pious propaganda from both sides, once we can get beyond the spite that loss provokes… then maybe we, the dispassionate and disinterested, can start making informed demands on our own government. Britain was hugely influential in the partitioning of Palestine; it was the UN who offered up Palestine (then a British colony) as a refuge to a persecuted Jewish people, but in a place where others already lived. The indigenous Palestinians were bound to be ruffled; their unwelcome guests became the home owners, the home owners became the unwanted guests. After the partitioning (which involved confiscation of land, effectively erasing hundreds of Palestinian towns and communities) and creation of Israel in 1947, by 1949 Israel controlled 78% of Palestine. The new State then excluded or made beholden the folk that originally called Palestine 'home'. By giving Jewish refugees a home the UN effectively created a new set of refugees and a new set of resentments.
And, ok… whilst it does seem obvious that currently Hamas are keen to create a wave of nausea against Israel by parading the bodies of Palestinian woman and children, and seem to be cynically creating those moments by throwing stones at Israel so that they throw rockets back, producing propaganda possibilities etc… Israel is too efficient, too well funded, too indignant…
Having 'the right' doesn't necessarily make things 'right'.
The trouble is that it is such a complicated story (or is presented as such); tangled misinformation, webs of lies FROM BOTH SIDES that sometimes it needs demystifying.
Too many fatalities suggest that these are wounds that will take generations to heal; raw revenge and resentments run deep, fester, last lifetimes… It's apparent that Israel currently has the right to defend its moral high ground; it's their invasive action and the previous actions of the UN that permitted the partitioning, and all that that preceded that… that's what I'm interested in. I want to understand the history of the troubles. It's a fascinating microcosm of human behavior as well as a heartbreaking indictment of the lengths that people will go to, and the depths that they'd stoop to, to create or protect the simplest of human rights: a place to call 'home'.
Maybe it's time for us all to dumb down and get naive… so, excuse me for this but…

- All folk have a right to a place to call home.

- War bad.

- Peace good.

- Let's have peace talks that aren't orchestrated or manipulated by Super Powers.

- Jew kiss Arab.

- Arab kiss Jew.

- Forget.

- Forgive.

- Be kind.

- Be kind.

- Be kind.

I'm reading a book review over on a Seamus Duggan's Vapour Trails blog on 'The Sound of Things Falling' by Juan Gabriel Vásquez. A couple of quotes resonate:

"Then I realized no one wants to hear heroic stories, but everyone likes to be told about someone else's misery… Adulthood brings with it the pernicious illusion of control. Disillusion comes sooner or later, but it always comes, it doesn't miss an appointment, it never has."

"I was also surprised by the alacrity and dedication we devote to the damaging exercise of remembering, which after all brings nothing good and serves only to hinder our normal functioning, like those bags of sand athletes tie around their calves for training."

Might I add my own quote:
"Your head bone's connected to your… heart bone.
Ain't that the word of The Lord?"


And that Lord, in whose name so many horrors and acts of terrorism have been committed and excused, He who seems to make righteous all wrongs, He isn't yours, or mine; He is ours; our creation. He doesn't just forgive our sins; he seems to absolve them. Shame on us all then, I guess…

This post is simplistic, contradictory and ill informed; I know that.
Ironic that the writer of a piece about partitioning is effectively sitting on the fence.
I'm aware that the story didn't start in 1947; my 'virtual' mate Phil Hogarth has taught me that…
At least it gives a solid/simplistic platform to either stand on or kick over…
I need to know, to understand.
Please help me to understand.
I'm all ears...



Monday, 28 July 2014

Lovesong: WOMAD 2014

WOMAD 2014 was great.
Di got there Friday and tells me that the pick of the day were Chicha Libra's Cumbian surf guitar riffs and moogs and the New Orleans swampy jazz funk of Trombone Shorty.
I arrived on Saturday and met up with Kathryn Williams who played a great set. Youssou N'Dour was reliably excellent as were Snarky Puppy, jazz/funkbutnotshite. Fat Freddy's Drop were workmanlike but fun, Alice Russel (cabaret soul but fantastic raspy voice!) Dakha Brakha were unclassifiable, Ukrain 'ethno chaos' with a little bit of Sigor Ros' icy beauty thrown in… Also I really liked Francois and the Atlas Mountains who are a bit fey on record but were stunning live. Nitin Sawney was at his usual humorless brilliant best. A Sunday highspot was Fatoumata Diawara and Buena Vista's Roberto Fonesca (Mali meets Cuba) which had all of the vibrancy of Africa with some subtle jazz shadings that allowed Fatoumata's voice flight and fancy.
We ran for the carpark as soon as we saw Sinead O'Connor but it was a grand weekend; food was fabulous, people chilled, children kept to a minimum… Di danced her ass off whilst I did that pointy fingered 'I've got some chewing gum stuck on my foot' strut that awaits all doomed middle aged men. And all of this after sleeping rough in an 'L' shape in a Mini in the car park. If anyone tells you that they are 'like a Tardis on the inside' they are either a liar or double jointed. Di won the battle of the blanket!
The only real disappointment (apart from the untimely tragic death of planned Sunday headliner Bobby Womack) was that I overlooked seeing a current favorite of mine Vinicio Capossela whose Tom Waits' collection must be as big as mine.
Here's a taste of what we missed…


Thursday, 24 July 2014

Lovesong: Bruce Springsteen: Hunter of the Invisible Game

I remember during that 3 year gap between 1975's 'Born to Run' and the release in 1978 of 'Darkness on the Edge of Town' that a few high profile Directors were courting Bruce. He was going to be the new Pacino. Thank God that he resisted. Bowie and Sting proved that it's best to stick at what you're best at… the public are pretty unforgiving when it comes to mediocrity.
See also Eric Cantona...
But this short film/promo for 'Hunter of the Invisible Game' is excellent; it shows Bruce in the unflinching light of character actor.
No 'vanity project' this.
Bruce looks knackered!
The best song on 'High Hopes' (by a mile) now has some haunting visuals.
I'm not sure what it's all about but it sure is beguiling...



Tuesday, 22 July 2014

To the Bone: Reviews: Vapour Trails


" It is like being privy to an intimate confession."


Here is a fantastic review of 'To the Bone' from Irish writer Seamus Duggan on his fine site; Vapour Trails.
Seamus is a perceptive and fearless writer who inevitably gets... right to the heart of the matter.
Excuse the platitude but it seems apt here.
His is a sanguine world view; worldly and (yes, hallelujah!) wordy; once you have visited his knocking shop, you'll surely return.
Enter the Vapour Trails site here:


Wednesday, 16 July 2014

To the Bone: Reviews: R2 Magazine

This 5***** review just in from R2 Magazine (Issue 46/July & August).
Many thanks to Jeremy Searle.

R2

JONES
*****
To The Bone
(MEME RECORDS) http://www.miraclemile.co.uk           

Has there ever been a more gorgeous introduction to an album than that which starts ‘Phil the Hat’ on Trevor Jones’ latest outing? If there has this reviewer hasn’t heard it, and the rest of the music never slips from that peak. Jones is of course one half of perfect popsters Miracle Mile and his musical compadre Marcus Cliffe is all over this album, making it nearer to Miracle Mile’s sound than his previous solo outings.


It’s a masterpiece of subtlety and delicacy - songs to immerse yourself in; late night listening with a glass of something decent. Every couplet makes you think, every chorus makes you soar. The sound is richly layered but never over-polished, the vocals just so, the words exactly right. Writing a review of an album as good as this feels superfluous, mere gilding of the lily. It doesn’t need ‘articulating’ or ‘explaining’, its power and beauty is sufficient in itself. All that needs to be said is that you won’t hear a better album this year.


Sunday, 13 July 2014

Toronto Tim Says: Brooooce!

Here's where I hand my page over to my Canadian mucker Tim Patrick. I'm actually just copying in his latest email (hope that's ok Tim) but he's always an engaging writer...
Here comes TT

Musically, I'm currently on a "Bruce binge" - having finally picked up the Peter Ames Carlin bio... leading me to re-watch the DVD's of the making of ''Born To Run' / 'Darkness'. Always fascinating. I'm 2/3 way though the book's 500 pages, and thus far I don't hate Bruce. He was a wildly eccentric character in his early years. Brilliant, tempermental, humble, stubborn as a mule. His pursuit of his musical vision tireless & relentless. And there's no doubt that he is "The Boss". Some wonderful stories about how down-to-earth/miserly he was. My fave - Even just before 'Born In The USA' came out he was still touring in an old van, renting used cars, and living in a very modest rented house in Jersey with harldly any furniture other than a pinball machine and a bed. So Bruce and his girlfriend would drive around the neighborhod on trash-night, and pick up old furniture left at the curb. Love it!
However, 2/3 in, I'm at the the part where suddenly beef-cake Bruce is on MTV "Dancing in the Dark" with Courteney Cox, and the "compromises" begin, I'm afraid. So much for the "I'll never play stadiums / I'll never intentionally write a "single" for a record / I'll never make a video / I'll never mix politics & music, blah, blah, blah..." This is the place where I mutinied on BS temporarily back in 1984. We'll see what happens as I progress with the read... I'm pretty sure I'll be able to forgive him in the end, unlike some musician bio's I've read... Clapton / Van / Macca / Mozza / Eagles / Marvin Gaye, even Sir Cliff - narcissistic, self-destructive egomaniacs all. OK, Cliff's not self-destructive, but unbelievably vain & self-righteous. I've yet to read Mr. Sting's autobiography. 
Oh, we've come full circle!
Anyway, the Bruce binge has me revisiting glory days... Memories of a 1978 concert at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, indelible... even on my increasingly forgetful noggin. The 10 minute epic performance of "Prove It All Night" stands out as the most electrifying live performance I've ever witnessed. (I know you've seen this one before) but - It was exactly like this: 



Sunday, 29 June 2014

Toronto Tim Says: 'To the Bone': The Review

My good Canadian friend Tim Patrick occasionally hijacks these pages to wax lyrical. 
Usually about some new musical wonder that has sideswiped him.
His latest salvo is a little closer to home.
Here he assesses my latest album 'To the Bone' and, bugger me, he likes it!
He's also posted this on Amazon (as have, currently Fleetwood Mac and David Ashley.)
Thanks too for those who have done this in the past; they really do help.
Come on the rest of you, why not do likewise.
Help shout it from the rooftops!


Here's Toronto Tim:

Toronto Tim says:

Jones

To the Bone


'To The Bone' - by Trevor Jones. Musically, the album title is apropos; the understated arrangements certainly a brave move, considering the majority of Miracle Mile/Jones discography tend to lean toward relatively polished & expansive productions, which I do happen to adore. However, sometimes a change is a good thing. The songs at first had me wanting for more, but then after a few listens, I realized they possess all that is needed. In fact, it's the deceptively simple arrangements that allow the poetic and profound lyrics to shine here.

The title also applies to the album subject matter... very personal, honest and sometimes heartbreaking. Seems like a record perhaps Jones needed to make as a form of catharsis, rather than necessarily wanting to be made. As with all Miracle Mile/Jones work, the words are extremely thoughtful and moving, yet lyrically oblique enough that the listener can take ownership in such a way that they become quite individually special. I dare anyone with a heart to listen to "Somewhere North Of Here" and not be forever touched. A perfect blend of brilliant melody/musical arrangement and intensely moving poetry. A stunning song of empathy, encouragement, perseverance, & devotion...

So, is there any chance that an introspective, sparse record from a barely recognizable artist will be a hit in this day & age? Not really. I just feel sorry for the throngs of folk who won't even know this wonderful record exists. With over a dozen albums worth of exquisite music made for thinking/feeling adults under his belt, I have to honestly say - IF THERE'S A BETTER SINGER/SONGWRITER IN THE UNIVERSE THAN TREVOR JONES... I DON'T KNOW WHO IT IS.


Saturday, 28 June 2014

To the Bone: Radio Play


To the Bone is starting to pick up some local radio play.
Here's notice of the latest, on the excellent singer/songwriter/radio presenter Johnny Coppin's show on BBC Radio Gloucester.
Johnny's latest album 'Borderland' is a lovely thing and here's a review.
You'll read that has covered on of my own songs 'Homeward'; I'm more than chuffed with the result as he re-imagines my grumbling guitar ballad on the piano with a quiet and delicate grace...
Details of the show are below, including the initial playlist.
Talk about a thorn between two roses...
Why not listen in?

BBC RADIO PLAYLIST – on BBC Gloucestershire,

on Sat 28th JUNE 2014 at 5.30pm


1. SUZANNE VEGA – Don’t Uncork What You Can’t Contain (3.31) Track 1 – single from new album TALES FROM THE REALM OF THE QUEEN OF PENTACLES on Cooking Vinyl FRYCD 573P (Suzanne Vega- PRS)

2. JONES – Phil The Hat (3.40) Track 1 from new album TO THE BONE on Meme Records CDMM 18 (Trevor Jones – PRS)

3.   CARA DILLON – Moorlough Mary (3.46) Track 4 from new album A THOUSAND HEARTS on Sony 8884 3069482 (Trad arr Cara Dillon/ Sam Lakeman- PRS)

4.   PETE COE AND ALICE JONES – One Summer’s Morning (4.56) Disc 1 Track 1 from new double CD – IN SEARCH OF FIVE FINGER FRANK on Backshift Music BASHCD 61 (Trad arr Pete Coe/Alice Jones- Backshift Music)

5.   PETE COE AND ALICE JONES – Shule Agra (3.33) Disc 1 Track 10 from new double CD – IN SEARCH OF FIVE FINGER FRANK on Backshift Music BASHCD 61 (Trad arr Pete Coe/Alice Jones- Backshift Music)

6.   CARRIVICK SISTERS – Making Horses (3.41) Track 5 from OVER THE EDGE on own label CVCD 2013 (Charlotte Carrivick – PRS)

7.   HOME SERVICE – Alright Jack (2.59) Track 1 from LIVE 1986 on Fledg’ling FLED 3085 (John Tams/Home Service – PRS)

Thursday, 26 June 2014

To the Bone: Reviews: AmericanUK

This review just in from AmericanaUK.
See the review below or better still go directly to the AmericanaUK website here.
Many thanks to Jeremy Searle



JONES “TO THE BONE”
Meme Records, 2014
Near-perfect explorations of the human heart


Another day, another slice of musical heaven from Miracle Mile man Trevor Jones. He strives for perfection, the perfect words, the perfect melody, to accompany his articulating of human emotions. Often he finds it, to such an extent that coming across a song that’s “just” very good, is something of a shock. With each new release he moves a little further along his personal road, a few steps towards that perfect album. He probably thinks he’ll never get there, which is exactly what artists should think. But some of us might beg to differ.
If you feel that emotions can’t be expressed except through blood, grit, dirt and raw howls then “To The Bone” will come as a revelation. When, on “Somewhere North of Here” Jones sings “I will walk beside you and you will know I’m there/I will touch you gently, to comfort your despair” his compassion is infinite, his reassurance total. When, on the opening “Phil The Hat”, he muses on an old friendship, it’s nostalgic but clear-eyed. When he describes a relationship slowly breaking up on “Man behind the Moon” he says more in ninety-seven seconds that most writers manage in an entire album. Ally lyrics of this power to equally good tunes, and tunes with hooks and gorgeous melodies to boot, and you have a magical listening experience.

Comparisons have been made (and validly) to the Blue Nile and Paul Buchanan’s work but really Jones is in a class of one. There’s a spiritual sense to his music, not in any religious sense, but in his search for the essence of what it is to be human. This is an album that does indeed cut to the bone. Buy it. Buy it now.

9/10
Jeremy Searle

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Lovesong: Nick Drake

It's Nick Drake's birthday today.
He would have been 66.
I love this photo of him.
You can see why Brad Pitt wanted to play him in the Hollywood take on his life.
I'm glad that particular project remains 'on hold'.
I'm always saddened and humbled by his music...

Why not join me and have a Nick Drake day?
Play all of his albums in order.
Could be the best 90 minutes (plus injury time) of the weekend.







Wednesday, 18 June 2014

To the Bone: Reviews: Onda Rock

This just in from Gianfranco Marmoro.
I'm unsure of the translation but… I think that he likes it…

Passionate, sincere, profound, essential, the music of the Miracle Mile seems to have finally found the perfect architecture "In Cassidy's Care" point of reference for his consecration. He arrived at the third solo album, the singer Trevor Jones is well aware that the emotional power of his music is the added value of a well-established style that is unlikely to continue to evolve.
In "To The Bone" the artist prefers to rediscover notes and harmonies aside, pending a more intimate diary in which to flow these beautiful and fragile sketches. Marcus Cliffe is always behind the scenes to grace the 14 tracks on the album without ever suffocating, and stressing with beautiful arrangements ofpedal steel and piano tone more sad and personal, where regret, resignation and silence, dream and hope they try to piece together a sense of bewilderment that Jones has lived with anxiety in the past tormented years.

For an author constantly striving to put music in the most secret emotions and sometimes harsh, it is necessary to give the healing power of music the key to the increasingly difficult journey towards maturity and old age. He has never hidden his admiration for the Blue Nile, and it is clear that intensive listening " Mid Air "Trevor Jones has given to the energy needed to face the inevitable melancholy starvation, which occurs when dreams run every time seem closer, making it necessary to start over.
The refined and sophisticated pop of Trevor always moves between known coordinates: Prefab Sprout,Elvis Costello and the whole heritage of the best songwriters Anglo-American, but his most recent passions seem to be Joe Henry, Tom Waits , Leonard Cohen , precisely the Blue Nile, Talk Talk and the Lilac Time, it is not difficult to see their poetry in the pages of "To The Bone", which is a nostalgic reminder of the value of friendship in "Phil The Hat" or the dreamy picture of "Dream Horses" (a beautiful ballad for piano and orchestra).

There is a new sensibility, however, behind the always beautiful ballads to electro-Jones and harmonic turns hugging each other, creating delicate uptempo songs that sound familiar, and perhaps a little innovative, but they are all pervaded by a spiritual novel. The formal perfection and the bombast of "In Cassidy's Care" is set aside in favor of a recklessness that as a gentle wind storm leaves decanted and the fears and thoughts without evidence or seek solace.
"To The Bone" is for sure the solo album more akin to the music of the Miracle Mile, but here everything is simpler, more minimal and straightforward. "We can discuss every word read or can we make love," Jones sings in "Books To Bed", but it is a last-ditch attempt to romance, just an invitation to talk about himself without metaphors or obstacles. "I will reveal my truth and you show me yours," he whispers again, while a police siren sounds far away.

Everything is on hold or waiting for a response in "To The Bone": a touch of country-western "Some Kind Of Surrender" try to soften the defeat of yet another waiver, almost sterile minimalism to Paul Buchananof "Pardon Me "sets to music the dismay and fear of going blind or perhaps only of being confused and distracted, and the sirens back on stage in the solo piano instrumental of" glimpsed And Gone "by opening the doors to the title track that seems to tighten for a moment the doors of suffering with an elegiac choral prayer Celtic folk style.
"Man Behind The Moon" and "Fireworks" seem to have escaped a project of the band-mother, with their romance more defined and the recurrent specter of a failed relationship or inert. It is behind the crystalline and limpid simplicity of episodes like "The Fullness Of Time" that hides however the essence of the new project of the musician, which gives an unexpected duet with Lucinda Drayton in "Angelicana", an uptempo track that evokes the past then sink your hands into a contagious and passionate soul.

Like any adventure, there is always a sound artist attention to detail not only lyrical but also theme: touch the innermost chords is very painful, but in this process of collective catharsis almost with his audiences Jones sees a hope that rely on "Somewhere North Of Here", a languid ballad immersed in the sound of the pedal steel Melvin Duffy ("I will walk beside you and you will know that there are, I touch you gently to comfort your despair").
It is an album destined to repeat the great success of the last album of the Miracle Mile, but certainly a testimony of a sincere and profound artistic profile that is unmatched in modern British pop music scene;too softly, the music of Trevor Jones remains one of the deepest pleasures of our mad passion for seven immutable notes.

7.5 Gianfranco Marmoro

(17/06/2014)


Monday, 16 June 2014

'To the Bone' is Released Today.

Thanks for your many messages of support and for the kind words from folk who have heard the record.
It seems to have struck a certain chord…
You could help me out by scribing Amazon and iTunes reviews; they really do help.
If you'd like a copy you can buy direct from me here.
If you want a deluxe HR download you can get it through Linn Records here:
Or you could go to iTunes here:
If you like the album please pass it on to as many folk as possible.
Cheers,
Trev

Sunday, 15 June 2014

To the Bone: Reviews: Elsewhere

With 'To the Bone' released today (June 16) what better way to celebrate than with another great review, just in.
This one is thoughtful and… funny.
I don't usually incite 'funny'...
It's from Graham Reid, a New Zealand journalist who writes for the online arts magazine 'Elsewhere'.
Thanks Graham.
I'm not sure about the 'beautifully modern home' though.
You should see my guttering…
Read the text of the review below or, ideally go straight to the source at Elsewhere here.


To the Bone
Jones

On the basis of this, his previous solo albums and those with Miracle Mile (with Marcus Cliffe, the multi-instrumentalist here who also produces) you'd imagine Britain's Trevor Jones this way: it's late afternoon in his beautifully modern home with a view over the Med and he's in a wicker chair by the pen glass door, the book of Romantic poetry lying in his lap, a glass of fine wine on the table nearby and his eyes on the distant horizon as he thinks of the lost love.
A breeze ruffles his hair and the melancholy mood is completed as the red sun sets and he walks to the piano to play a slow and graceful ballad . . .
If that isn't Jones in reality (and it doubtless isn't), then that is certainly the mood his songs often evokle (enhanced by his gentle spoken word pieces).
There is sensitive heart and poetic impulse at work and his music is most definitely for those over 35 with a few life experiences behind them. "Don't make it into a movie" a character says on Pardon Me, a line that some of us might have had the misfortune to have heard as a relationship unravels.
But Jones -- as my intro here implies -- has the ability to evoke exactly that: the exceptional opener here Phil the Hat starts "Hand on heart, I never saw this coming, it's like you never left the room . . ." as it reflects on the passing of a friend ("Let's raise a glass to our younger selves") and you feel there in the room as he thinks the "false alarms and happy endings" through.
Musically very little here will set pulses racing, but that's not Jones' intention: he takes you into a place where thinking is more valued than action, that reflection is its own reward ("all that should have been" on the equally lovely Some Kind of Surrender) and that on a cold night taking books to bed while wearing fingerless gloves is the kind of simple shared intimacy (and need) . . . and a seduction adults can understand.
If the overall mood is turned down low, the gentle embellishments of these songs -- mostly supported by piano -- with pedal steel and dobro in places (by Melvin Duffy) adds even more atmosphere. Angelicana ("you crave dusty roads") is another highpoint.
Over the 14 songs Jones' intimate and poetic style and that consistent mood might pall for some, but put yourself in this place. It's late afternoon and you are in your beautifully modern home with a view over the Med . . .

Graham Reid

To the Bone: Out tomorrow

So, 'To the Bone' is released tomorrow.
June 16th.
I'm hoping that it'll stir up some interest but fear that it might pass unseen.
It's always an uneasy time around release date.
You want the world to tell you that your latest baby is beautiful, but secretly fear that it might have to abide in the cellar with all of the other slightly wonky, cross eyed offspring…
If that sounds dark, wait until you:
a: hear the album
b: see the Uruguayans kick Stirling up in the air on Thursday

You can order the album direct here.
You could also really help its cause by offering up reviews on Amazon or on iTunes.

Early reviews have been encouraging:


‘Music to stir the senses… a genuine gem’
Roots and Branches

‘Achingly tender’
Folk Radio UK

‘Gorgeous ambient touches. Another corker… possibly his best yet’
HiFi News (Album of the Month)

Here's a track (courtesy Macwood Fleet) to whet the appetite.