Flyinshoes Review

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Americana singer-songwriter Jeff Crosby (Idaho-raised) is a powerful and intelligent act. Able to tug at one’s heart and ease into one’s thinking at a heartbeat. Lyrically hooky “Best $25 I Ever Spent” comes rushing through the gates like an animal fleeing, an attacker looking for big game. Crosby was in Taganga, Magdalena Columbia when he wrote the song, and with its warm spacious feel epitomizes the location.


With the likes of a more than just handy, “Everything Will Change” and the less energised, but arguably a great deal more powerful and substantial lyrically. This as he speaks of his living hell on “Full Moon On Sunset”, and ticks all the boxes while doing so. The busy, world-traveled musician reflects on life in neither a distinctively happy or sombre fashion.


Like with another fine, erstwhile singer-songwriter Chuck Brodsky he plunders the vaults for material on small-town America (he grew up in one) and with a rich timbre to his voice he nails “Sunrise Over Iceland” (for Lois). Plus you have “Cold Summer”, and with likewise a progressive, probing feel as he flies higher than an eagle, “Beautiful And Strange”. This as he offers a hunger to move on, while on slowing the tempo to a pace where every nuance and lyric is left bare and counts “Hearts Too Heavy” is a true marvel. Warmed in harmony vocals, piano his studious tones carve a niche in one’s heart.


“What Stories, What Light” is a steel and acoustic guitar country styled affair; with its loping gait it lends a variation to the album. Nice it is too. Another to break forth, even more so is the free flowing “Everything Will Change” (another that showcases the richness and depth to his vocal delivery, and where the music hails) as he cleverly juggles the tempo and direction of the material content.   


As for closing track, “Hotel Bibles” underlines the saying of how sometimes the best is kept till last. Crosby is guilty as charged. The song is brilliant! Worthy of the admission fee in itself. Steeped in angst and earthy tones here is a song people would be advised to check-out in terms of covering, and at the same time realise they would need to be super-human to equal never mind upgrade the original


                                                            Maurice Hope 

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November 2017

JW Roy & The Royal Family
80 pts.
A Room Full Of Strangers
Royal Family Records
Chris Hillman
79 pts.
Bidin' My Time
Turnpike Troubadours
46 pts.
Long Away From Your Heart
Bossier City Records
Jolie Holland & Samantha Parton
36 pts.
Wildflower Blues
Cinquefoil Records
Eilen Jewell
34 pts.
Down Hearted Blues
Signature Sounds
Lucinda Williams
31 pts.
This Sweet Old World
Highway 20/Thirty Tigers
JD McPherson
29 pts.
Undivided Heart & Soul
New West
Mark Martyre
26 pts.
Tom Russell
26 pts.
Folk Hotel
Frontera Records-Proper Records
Anna Tivel
25 pts.
Small Believer
Fluff And Gravy Records
Margo Price
25 pts.
All American Made
Third Man Records
Fred Wickham
22 pts.
Mariosa Delta
Thirty Days Records
Joe Henry
22 pts.
Ear Music
Whitney Rose
22 pts.
Rule 62
Six Shooter/Thirty Tigers
Dick LeMasters
18 pts.
Incompatible Things
Longneck Road Music
Jim White
18 pts.
Waffles, Triangles & Jesus
Loose Music
Peter Gallway
18 pts.
Feels Like Religion
Gallway Bay Music
Thomm Jutz
17 pts.
Crazy If You Let It
Mountain Fever Records
Kris Delmhorst
16 pts.
The Wild
Blue Blade Records
Daniel Crabtree
15 pts.
In The Shadow Of His Wings
Jeremy Pinnell
15 pts.
Ties Of Blood And Affection
Sofaburn Records
Julien Baker
15 pts.
Turn Out The Lights
Amber Cross
14 pts.
Savage on the Downhill
Chris Blevins
14 pts.
Better than Alone
Horton Records
David Rawlings
14 pts.
Poor David's Almanack
Acony Records
Grainne Duffy
14 pts.
Where I Belong
Jeff Crosby
14 pts.
Postcards From Magdalena
At The Helm Records

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