Monday, August 9, 2010

CD Review: Braam - Living Room

This is the first effort from Braam in a while, and to be honest, I don’t remember the Chicago-based quartet taking such an intricate, acoustic-based approach their last time out. Regardless of how Braam arrived at Living Room, it’s a worthwhile destination. An impressive collection of homespun tunes with strong melodies and harmony vocals, Living Room should click with the indie rock crowd, as well as fans of the original singer-songwriter boom from the 1970s.


A lot of these songs open with just vocals and acoustic guitar strumming before evolving into more elaborate arrangements. The rough-edged vocals have a hint of John Prine, particularly on the satiric “It’s Cool” and “Home Sweet Home,” a tale of a guy who’s down on his luck. “Burlington Northern,” which was the band’s first video, is a wistful folk-rock traveling tune with lines like, “I’m going to the country, I hope it’s still there.” Living Room has rock songs as well, like the Neil Young influenced “Ballad Of The Year,” and “Way Away,” which features a loping bass and an irresistible melody that evokes “Lowdown” by Boz Scaggs.


Braam will be performing this Thursday night at The Dark Room in Chicago, from 8:00 to 10:00 PM.

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