Music Reviews – Mr.Pine and B.D. Gottfried

Mr. Pine, Rewilding: For their second release, songwriters Matt McLennan and Kevin Scott secured an extraordinary backup band to fill out their sound. Along for the ride is Leslie Oldham (vocals), Richard Caners (violin), Jason Peters (guitars) and Ken Phillips (bass) – they contribute a solid, adventurous base that helps McLennan and Scott’s anecdotal pop, folk-rock sound. A perfect sample of this is “Glass Petals,” which starts off as a Celtic waltz that morphs into an epic prog-rock groove. Other highlights include “Streets of York,” featuring Jay Churko (Chords of Canada, Transistor Sound and Lighting Co) on banjo, and opener “Ace of Cups I,” which is one of this year’s best songs. “Cups” takes you on an auditory journey with its percussive effects, ethereal harmonies and McLennan’s constant emotional strum that ends in doubt: “I probably love you,” The only downside to the record is if you are not into medieval music, some of tracks may wear on you. There is always a visual vibe of running through a fairy-filled meadow with dwarfs and elves smoking pipes while plucking stringed instruments. Okay, I am being a tad facetious. For fans of The Decemberists, Fairport Convention and Ghost Bees, this is necessary listening. (Whisky Lad Recordings) ~ 3½ out of 5 Stars

B.D. Gottfried, The Element Of Left: All right, I give up. I will never understand what B.D. Gottfried is attempting to create and for those people who really love this guy, the more power to you. I think there is an underlying story of the current human condition, but the statement is lost in Gottfried’s stale 80’s, industrial rock. This is by far the worst record of the year, as it has no entertaining or emotionally affecting value. (Independent) ~ ½ out of 5 Stars

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