Tuesday, April 18, 2017

James Gilroy Kane: “AMFIMINAL” (2017) CD Review

I am thoroughly enjoying UK singer and songwriter James Gilroy Kane’s new release, AMFIMINAL, the follow-up to his 2013 album, Behind the Blues. It features all original material, written by James Gilroy Kane. Joining him on this CD are Dave Gould on bass, banjo and backing vocals; Wilf Hodgson on bass; Geoff Bamford on drums; Paul Godden on dobro; Jean Godden on fiddle; and Keith Holmes on backing vocals.

The album opens with “Sinatra In The Rain,” one of my favorite tracks.  I love the easygoing folk and country rock vibes of this song. It has a friendly feel, which is something we can all use these days, particularly as things become nuttier and nuttier out there. There is even a bit of whistling at the end of the tune, and a little nod to “Singing In The Rain.” This is one of the tracks on which Wilf Hodgson plays bass. It’s followed by “Grandma’s Garden,” another of the disc’s highlights. This is happy folk tune with some nice work on banjo (an instrument that almost always makes me smile) and fiddle. It feels like friends gathered on someone’s front porch for a little fun. So grab a partner, and hold on tight. “Let’s all go out to play/Just like we did yesterday/Sitting in the sun/Swinging on the swing/All in Grandma’s garden/I know you, you know me/We’re all happy as can be/Tell a story/Tell a little lie/What is the problem if we cry.” By the way, in this song, he mentions kissing a woman named Molly. James Gilroy Kane has another song titled “Molly,” and so I’m wondering if these references are to a specific woman in his life.

“Simple Love Song” is, as its title promises, a simple and sweet love song that I can’t help but like. It has both pop and folk elements, and it rubs me exactly the right way, you know? It opens with these lines: “I can’t stop my feelings, I just love you/If you never knew before, you know now.” Indeed. That’s certainly one way to let someone know, in a love song that is, in a way, about love songs. “Here we are, talking about love songs that we knew/Things we thought we had lost, lovers not so true/I can’t help these feelings if I miss you/Even though you’re not so far away.” The lines that caught my attention the first time I listened to this disc, the lines I want to sing to a special someone, who will totally understand, are: “I can’t stop my arms that want to hold you/To feel your body close against my skin/And I can’t help but say to you, I love you.” Not bad, eh? Interestingly, this disc contains a second version of this song, with James Gilroy Kane on vocals and acoustic guitar (and, I’m guessing, foot stomping), unaccompanied by other musicians. I like both versions a lot. This second version has a more intimate feel.

“High Land” is a sweet-sounding country song, and is another of this album’s strong tracks. I think fans of Wilco and Son Volt will dig this song. This one delivers some good, positive vibes. “That’s where I belong/Always will.” Another favorite from this album is “The Bell,” partly because of that great folk rock groove, and also because of that wonderful work on dobro. “I will hear you call my name/I will see you smile again.” This song also features some nice work on fiddle. This CD concludes with a pretty song titled “Angel Of The South.” This is the track to feature Keith Holmes on backing vocals. “You wear your innocence with a smile/Trusting all you see/If I could reach to hold your hand/Have you close to me.”

CD Track List
  1. Sinatra In The Rain
  2. Grandma’s Garden
  3. Simple Love Song
  4. You Knew Me Better
  5. High Land
  6. Losing My Way
  7. Simple Love Song (solo)
  8. The Bell
  9. Digging My Hole The Movie
  10. Angel Of The South
AMFIMINAL is available now through Crow Cragg Music. At least, I assume it is. Strangely, there is very little information about this artist, and basically no mention of this album online, or even about the label (in fact, the web site listed on the back of the CD case doesn’t seem to exist). Actually, my listing it as a 2017 release is little more than a guess. I have absolutely no idea when this CD came out, or if it’s even out. It is very strange that there is no information about it.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for such a great Review, the CD can be purchased from www.caravanmusicpromotions.com a long with James Gilroy-Kane's Other Albums.

    please contact JJ@caravanmusicpromotions.co.uk to order your copy now.