Autumn Days





The singer-songwriter thing is always hit or miss with me. Very few have the lyrical content and melodic chops to keep me entertained for long. I was asked to check out the latest album from the Los Angeles singer-songwriter named Gus Black, who (according to his official bio) has had his tunes featured on the soundtrack for the film Scream, as well as on the TV shows Alias, Smallville and One Tree Hill. Although that may impress some people, it did nothing to spark my interest. As a favor, I gave the disc a listen and have to admit... I was impressed. Autumn Days is his fourth album, this time being released by Cheap Lullaby Records in the US. The diversity of his sound is broad enough to keep the album interesting, yet it remains cohesive enough to make it feel like more of a body of work rather than just a collection of tunes. "Don't Go Tellin' The Whole World" and "Traffic And Sound" ease us into Black's world with primarily acoustic cuts that lean more folk than pop. "Trillion Things" picks up the tempo a tad, adding in a rhythm section to this sunny song, which sounds like Joseph Arthur on anti-depressants while watching puppies play at a dog park. The moment I was sold on Gus Black was on "Long Beach (It's A Miracle)". Again, I am reminded of Joseph Arthur, but mixed with influences of Elliott Smith and even Lou Barlow. This is a damn good song that should put Black on the map. It contains the type of chorus that can truly make an artist if it gets in the right hands. Black's voice has a familiar quality to it, yet unique enough to set him apart from his peers, such as on the Travis-flavored chorus on "Rollercoaster". Another album highlight "Certain Kind Of Light", which comes across as a less-glossy jam from Remy Zero, with Black's vocals focusing in his upper range in the vein of Cinjun Tate. The album ends as simply as it begins, with the beautiful orchestral ballad that is also the title track. Gus Black created a record that doesn't fit into one specific genre, yet fits comfortably on my iPod. Don't bother trying to pigeonhole his music, just sit back and soak it in.

Gus Black
Cheap Lullaby

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Autumn Days