Buford Pope – The Waiting Game

Album Review | Unchained Records | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 3/5

Mikael Liljeborg, otherwise known as Buford Pope, hails from Gotland, an isolated Swedish Island in the Baltic Sea. Raised on a diet of Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty and Neil Young, whose influence is evident here, especially on the Young inspired “Hey Hey Aha”, Buford Pope’s prolific output is beginning to stretch beyond his well explored European stomping ground. This latest collection of a dozen self-penned songs, points towards a more mature period of creativity, the mandolin-led “Hard Life” reminiscent of Steve Winwood’s return to form in the mid-1980s, contrasting with the gritty blues of “A Hundred and Ninety-Nine” to the delicate rendering of both “Can I Be There For You” and “Tell Me What I Am”, each of which demonstrates a decidedly tender side of Pope’s writing. With Mark Drake sharing a writing credit on the opening song “America”, The Waiting Game is pretty much Buford Pope through and through.