Friday, October 16, 2009
Cory Branan & Jon Snodgrass - "S/T"
While Cory Branan fans anxiously await his forthcoming new full length, release date not yet announced, you've got the chance to hear a great sampling of Cory and one of Colorado's finest songwriters, Jon Snodgrass, on this split 12" vinyl (or cassette) release from Suburban Home Records. The recording is made up of 7 songs from these two songwriters. If you are wondering about the breakdown of said songs, here's the quick rundown from SH's Web site: "There are 2 originals by Jon, 3 originals by Cory, and 2 covers (Solo in Soho by Phil Lynott, Wild One by Thin LIzzy)."
Branan's songs include "The Corner" and "Walkaround," two songs that easily stand alongside any of his best material to date. The laughing at the end of the latter song, as well as the shredding at the end of "Yeah, So What?" give the record a bit of a more laid back feel, which, for lack of a better description, provides a bit of a more intimate setting that I appreciate from a limited edition release like this.
Fans should not be discouraged from giving this record a try if they don't have a vinyl player. As most vinyl sellers offer these days, this record comes along with a digital download card for the 7 songs. You can also buy it on cassette (also with downloads), for those of you lucky enough to have a cassette player in your car still. (On a side note, if car companies had just waited a bit longer before pulling cassette players from cars, we would be in so much better shape, because you could so much more easily play your ipod in the car, and wouldn't have to mess with all that itrip business.)
Snodgrass, who is one half of the songwriting core of Fort Collins band Drag the River, adds a couple of nice originals as well. "Born Apart" is a fantastic example of his songwriting style, and is a song that could just as easily be a DTR classic were it released by the band. Even if you're not familiar with his work, I think many can appreciate Snodgrass's voice upon first listen. I struggle to describe it accurately without sounding like I'm overly impressed with my own writing, but it is basically the perfect voice for the music he plays. Part growl, part twang, and just spot on for his alt/country/rock/roll/roots/whatever/drinking songs.
This record has the feel of a couple of friends going into the studio and sitting down to play some of their new songs for each other, with no rigid ideas about a finished product, and they come out with a solid project that is a great listen beginning to end. Each artist provides harmonies for the other, and while the two songwriters' styles are quite different, the songs mesh together cohesively. Plus, if you hadn't noticed, the cover has a cobra and a wolf, which should have sold you on it from the get-go.
Don't miss our recent interview with Cory that you can find here.