Graham Brown Band / Spirit And Soul
Release Date: July 9, 2021
Label: Word Song Records
Genre: Americana/Roots Rock
Produced by Bill Buckingham and Graham Brown
Recorded at Edmontone Studios, Edmonton AB
All songs by Graham Brown (MAPL/SOCAN)
Graham Brown is that most rare of species – a bona fide roots rock guitar hero. Since he was first heard in 1984 playing with Canada’s alt-country pioneers Jr. Gone Wild, Brown’s rich and graceful style has evolved alongside his songwriting.
It’s prompted Americana UK to write, “It is unarguable that when Graham Brown flies free he creates some blistering guitar solos,” and The Georgia Straight to say about the 2019 album Let Me In, “If roots music is your jam, you’re not likely to give a damn whether [Let Me In] came out in 2019, 2005 or 1990. You’re just going to dig it.”
Vancouver-based Brown and his band mates, guitarist/keyboardist Rob Blackburn, bassist John Werner, and drummer Mark Gruft are keeping their remarkably consistent winning streak intact with their latest effort Spirit And Soul, 11 new original songs that once again carry on the high energy, melodic, no-frills spirit of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers and Uncle Tupelo.
Ironically, Spirit And Soul captures the Graham Brown Band in top live form just before pandemic lockdown restrictions were implemented in March 2020. The album was cut in a single day at Edmontone Studios in Edmonton, Alberta before the band’s gig in town that night, although any “live-off-the-floor” raggedness is nearly impossible to detect. The Graham Brown Band is just that good.
They have been proving that for at least the last decade since the release of the 2011 album Hiwatt, playing hundreds of shows around the world, including such hallowed venues as The Cavern Club in Liverpool, The Marquee in London, and both The Roxy and The Troubadour in Los Angeles.
As the band patiently awaits the opportunity to get back on the road, the time off has reinforced a lot of the messages contained on Spirit And Soul in terms of finding resilience through love. The Graham Brown Band is doing precisely that, on the strength of their finest collection of songs to date.