Friday, December 04, 2015

New Music 2016 - Part 3 - Paul McClure - Songs for Anyone

'Songs for Anyone', which will be released on the estimable Clubhouse Records in January, is the second solo LP released by Paul McClure, the self-styled Rutland Troubadour. This is a rather appropriate moniker for, while the UK as a whole is small in comparison to some US states, I'd wager that a large part of the UK population couldn't describe with any certainty where Rutland lies in our little island.

The Clubhouse stable encompasses Americana-related artists from both sides of the ocean and the songs on this album have universal themes rather than specifically American or British ones. It continues the thread from his previous release 'Smiling From The Floor Up' in being for the greater part man-and-song-and-guitar. All songs on this LP are self-written but there are subtle textural changes, including the use of harmonica from time to time and backing vocals from Hannah Elton-Wall (Redlands Palomino Company), lap steel, piano and other instruments, as well as skilfully discrete production duties, all by Joe Bennett (The Dreaming Spires). The track listing is as follows, despite the fact this is a CD:

Side 1:

  1. Gentleman's Agreement
  2. Unremarkable Me
  3. I Could Be A Happy Man
  4. Don't Take Me Under
  5. Everyday Is Mine To Spend
  6. Holding A Ten Ton Load

Side 2:
  1. So Long
  2. My Big Head Hat Of Dreams
  3. Yesterday's Lies
  4. My Little Ray Of Sunshine
  5. A Song For Anyone
  6. Lady Flossington
The best way to enjoy this music is of course live. In my opinion there is no place better to do that than The Saloon stage at Truck Festival. It is as far from the seething masses of some festivals as one could possibly imagine.
Paul McClure, Saloon stage, Truck Festival, 18 July 2015.

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