Greg Brown: The Evening Call (Red House/Elite)

 |   |  <1 min read

Greg Brown: Cold and Dark and Wet
Greg Brown: The Evening Call (Red House/Elite)

Iowa-born singer-songwriter Brown is one of those singer-songwriters that other artists line up to pay tribute to: in fact Lucinda Williams, Ani DiFranco, Gillian Welch and others appeared on a tribute to him a few years back.

He's a poet (he recorded an album of William Blake poems) and is very much in the boho-Beat Generation lineage whose lyrics have the economy of American Zen poet Gary Snyder, and on this album pulls off a spare spoken-word piece without sounding forced because that is his tradition.

He has released some superb albums (The Poet Game about a decade ago is where you go after this current album), been a regular on Garrison Keillor's radio show A Prarie Home Companion (Keillor and others appear in the excellent DVD film of the singer's life and work which came with Brown's If I Had Known compilation), and is much favoured by those who know their alt.country/American folk-blues.

The Evening Call is another typically understated but intensely focused and quite dark Brown album with songs about love fading, the plight of working people when jobs go overseas and cars cost what houses used to, life as an itinerant, and love regained.

I once called him a "universal regionalist" because his lyrics seem drawn from the entirely local and personal, yet reach out beyond those confines.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Dead Man's Bones: Dead Man's Bones (Anti/Shock)

Dead Man's Bones: Dead Man's Bones (Anti/Shock)

This will be an acquired taste but its release around Halloween is I suppose apt, especially if for you Halloween is a Serious Event and doesn't have a lot to do with buying a witches' hat or... > Read more

The Broken Heartbreakers: Wintersun (BHB)

The Broken Heartbreakers: Wintersun (BHB)

The self-titled debut album by this Auckland-based folk-pop band was among the Best of Elsewhere 2007 list -- and they have just been getting better. No surprise really given that alongside the... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

JIMI HENDRIX (2000): A slight return to the Experience

JIMI HENDRIX (2000): A slight return to the Experience

To fully appreciate the impact Jimi Hendrix had, you need to forget the decades of myth-making and t-shirts since his death. Try to imagine the music world in 1966. When Jimi... > Read more

BECK CONSIDERED (2018): A man in and out of his time

BECK CONSIDERED (2018): A man in and out of his time

It was almost 20 years that I first saw Beck in concert, an extraordinary show at the glamorous Art Deco Wiltern Theatre on Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles. My recollection was he hadn't... > Read more