It's interesting reviewing an album called 'Long live all of us' after
Margaret Thatcher's death has just sparked a massive celebration from
those who hated all she stood for. But it's that sentiment that Glossary
very much embrace with their seventh record; the celebration bit,
at least- that whatever bad is going on in the world, there is always
a band willing to make an upbeat collection of tunes to make you forget
your troubles. Perhaps something for the dudes in Brixton to dance
along to. Or perhaps not.
Anyway. Hailing from Tennessee, it is potentially no surprise that
the quintet have a largely bluesy/country feel, a theme that continues
through each track to a point, often laced with strong pop melodies
of a vintage age to appeal to a broad listening audience (particularly
if you enjoy Radio 2). For example, opening song 'Trouble won't last
always' is an ode to long, summer days, of trips down dusty roads,
of a carefree era portrayed in the films 'Dazed and confused' or 'Reality
Bites', where all that mattered was getting laid and drunk and no-one
cared much about poll tax riots or the state of the NHS. My Mum tells
me to live in the present. She thinks Glossary are pleasant (the rhyming
wasn't intended). This is probably because they provide a great soundtrack
to her kind of philosophy.
A near-constant use of harmonies, courtesy of Joey and Kelly Kneiser,
add to a comparison of artists like Little Big Town, Lynyrd Skynyrd
and BC Camplight but what makes Glossary different to the aforementioned
is the glorious, rich sound of brass that punctuates their more interesting
parts, by the very people that have worked with legends like Al Green,
no less. Yes, indeed- Otis Redding's horn section is resurrected on
'Nothing can keep me away' and, with the beautifully simple guitar
solos of Todd Beene, the soulful aspect of Glossary- though not groundbreaking-
is what sets them apart from their present contemporaries. Relaxing,
easy-listening of the highest order, the only criticism is that 'Long
live all of us' gets a bit slow, dull and acoustic towards the end.
But then, like Maggie, nobody's perfect, eh? Arf. Still, seize the
day and all that.