Album Review | Burnt Chilli Records | Review by Marc Higgins | Stars: 4/5
The Jaywalkers deliver a rootsy, authentic Americana. Doubly impressive given that Mike Giverin, Jay Bradberry and Lucille Williams are a UK three-piece. “Homage to the Fromage” is a beautiful opener, picked or plucked strings, weaving fiddle and a thumping Double Bass beat. “What Do I Know” and “This Time” balance light and dark with sparkling mandolin and some atmospheric bowed fiddle notes. Jay Bradberry’s vocals are just a delight, very much the icing on a layered performance that has all the bluegrass sparkle and tension of Crooked Still. “(Please) Rescue Me” just flies with a bright Country Pop feel, a fine chorus and some infectious playing. Beneath the sparkle “This Time” ponders the ways we are damaging the natural environment and titles the album. “This is the One”, with rich vocal harmonies, and a hummable tune is another delight. Breaking the musical fourth wall, as well as addressing issues, this is also a song about creativity and writing a song that songsmith Mike Giverin is pleased with. It does underline the fact that the warmth and openness of the Jaywalkers’ music should appeal to a wider international audience. “Life I Chose” is another that looks at the romance in the life of the troubadour journeyman musician. It’s a warm, wry smile in the evening sun song. Scott Poley’s pedal steel adds some Country sparkle alongside The Jaywalkers’ distinctive harmonies on this classic “Meet on the Ledge” encore song. The wonderfully Burnt Chilli Creek is another exciting instrumental with the foot tapping melody bouncing between the instruments. “Too Close for Comfort” features another great lyric about picking your way carefully and a find vocal from Jay. With a great rhythm this is another track that has the makings of a great live song. Album closer is a one Mike, studio live, lively bounce through Johnny Cash’s Big River. The track pulses with energy and life and leaves you wanting more. Warmth, energy, thoughtful writing, beautiful vocals and fine ensemble playing there is so much here to recommend.