- "The Occasionals" 1999
east central one
Some recordings hit you in the face like a hammer blow & can lose their appeal almost as quickly. Others like this however, are insidious, wheedling their way unnoticed into your subconscious to devastating effect. Jim Bryson’s dark vignettes are peopled by gritty, world weary characters, just enough of their stories sketched in simple first person lyrics & supported by musical dynamics to draw the listener into their, often twisted, internal monologues.
The songs are dressed in raw, chiming & driving organic sounds with a twist of Country courtesy of a highly sympathetic scratch band of Bryson’s friends ‘The Occasionals’ - drummer Peter Von Althen (Starling, Skydiggers, Fred Eaglesmith), guitarist Ian LeFeuvre (Starling, Lynn Miles), bassist Darren Hore (Punchbuggy) and pedal steel guitarist Tom Thompson (Kathleen Edwards, Meg Lunney). LeFeuvre, spraying sweet & caustic electric guitar like the sinister mutant spawn of Paul Westerberg, Richard Thompson & Neil Young heavily influences the overall sound.
The warm burr of Bryson’s voice is well suited to these tales of heartache (he might find it hard to write without the word ‘heart’), revenge & bittersweet small town relationships. He achieves smooth integration of story & music and knows how to write a memorable melody & strong chorus line, elements which make for rewarding repeated listening rather than short term impact.
Currently available via the east central one websitewww.eastcentralone.com & scheduled for full UK release in February 2002.
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