The Bros. Landreth
Birthday Cake Records
Deeply Personal and Mellow Lo-Fi Influenced Canadiacana
The Bros. Landreth?
Not the most prolific of recording artists, are they?
Three albums in nearly ten years? ….. but; what albums they are!
Their debut; *LET IT LIE possibly changed my life; as it was a ‘gateway’ album to the mystical world of Canadian Roots music; which has subsequently become a cornerstone of our little website.
Opening track After The Rain took my breath away; just like the first time I heard the Brothers way back in *2013 ….. a new and rather beautiful change of direction beckons; taking their Rootsy/Alt. Country into unchartered mellower territories that lead back to Laurel Canyon, methinks?
Back To Thee, which follows is almost Lo-Fi in construction, but the crystal clear and sparse production gives Joey’s ode to his wife a cutting edge that you don’t expect from something so relatively simple.
After the album ended the first afternoon I was left scratching my head as to why Bros. Landreth aren’t a major act; headlining Concert Halls the world over …… listen to Don’t Feel Like Crying or What In The World and especially Drive All Night (plus the edited version too) and tell me you aren’t listening to Master Musical Craftsmen at work; and in Joey and Dave two singers who can use their individual voices to not just squeeze every last drop of emotion out of their songs; but leaving you enthralled at the way they tug at not just your heart but your brain too!
With no discernable radio-friendly single here (apart from, maybe the radio edit of Drive All Night?) selecting a Favourite Song has become ever so personal; which is a good thing as each and every song is personal to the writer himself; but will be to everyone who hears them …. such is the cleverness in the writing and construction.
You Don’t Know Me digs deep and brings proceedings down to a dark note, as it appears to be a break-up song of the highest order; with Joe Pisapia’s pedal-steel tuned to heartbreak mode; and the bass replicating a heart slowly beating in time with the pathos of the singer.
Corduroy is a strange title for a love song; but the fabric is one of the things the storyteller likes about his loved one …. or could it be a metaphor for the brothers’ previously strained relationship now being mended?
I nearly chose the ‘musicians’ song; Stay ….. a regular theme of course; but some writers can capture the tattered emotions of delicately balancing ‘life on the road’ making money to pay the rent; and staying home as long as possible with their family and/or lover ….. the Bros. Landreth land this big ole fish with style and grace here.
There’s another song that entered the running too; Don’t Feel Like Crying featuring a delicate and mournful guest vocal from Leith Ross, and along with Joe’s baritone acoustic guitar and a sparse arrangement that’s bound to leave you open mouthed … and open-minded.
All that withstanding; I’m choosing the mellow and razor-sharp Shame, where the Bros. Landreth take us on a trip down a Country road with more twists and turns than you’d ever expect. Again, it’s possibly about the brothers themselves; but it’s certainly a song that will get under the skin of many who hear it and then get to thinking about some special relationship of their very own …. such is the intelligently smart writing and story herein.
As my wife uttered, “There aren’t many laughs here” and nor are there meant to be; some music is purely cerebral and this is one of them ….. best played late at night in a darkened room, alongside a glass of something strong ….. and your memories.
Released May 13th 2022
*LET IT LIE
Back in 2013; this is what happened ….
” One Thursday evening in July I was drying the dishes and listening to Bob Harris Country on BBC Radio 2 when I very nearly dropped a plate. He played a track by a band he’d only just discovered; and to say it took my breath away would be an understatement.
I even had the audacity to ask Mrs. H to sssh; so I could hear the song through to the end (brave? Foolish?). The band was Bros. Landreth from Winnipeg, Manitoba and the song was called Runaway Train.
As soon as it finished I found their management on the internet and made contact. A month later the disc arrived….but it was intended for a January release!”