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Review: 'Douglas, John'
'John Douglas'   

-  Label: 'Reveal Records'
-  Genre: 'Folk' -  Release Date: '6.10.23.'

Our Rating:
This is John Douglas debut solo album after 30 odd years in the Trashcan Sinatras, this album was recorded totally solo, just John and his Acoustic guitar, all the songs are recorded in one take with no overdubs. They are a selection of Trashcan Sinatras tunes, one Prefab Sprout cover and a few new songs, recorded at Kyoti Studios in Glasgow with Mark Freegard producing the album.

The album opens with Lost played on a dark hued acoustic guitar, the plaintive vocals explaining all the ways in which he's lost, needing a helping hand to find his way back from the brink.

I Just Want To Go Home is sparse evocation of the need to go home and be alone, curling up in your own personal cocoon, as no amount of drinks or drugs are going to make you feel more gregarious, he just needs someone to drive him home, most of us have had similar feelings at some time or other, that need to be alone with a good book.

Weightlifting is something I wouldn't expect John to be into, it's not a very indie god activity, but he pumps his chest out, as he finds a way to get that great weight to lift off his chest, as the depression lifts and he finds some chinks of light coming into his life once more.

Orange Crayons slows things down to a barely their crawl, as he describes how he will decorate the white paper using those orange crayons in an old school classroom.

Leave Me Alone has none of the strutting preening angst of the Lou Reed song of the same name, this is far more haunted hoping for solitude, I wonder how John is so desperate for peace and quiet does his other half Eddi Reader really push his buttons like that all the time?

Maid O'The Loch is slow imprecations hoping for some love from someone on the other side of the water, full of longing, hope for calm water to sail across to see the Maid once more.

The Sleeping Policeman is more ruminative thoughts about a seafaring life, gently evoking tales of drinking brandy telling tales of high old times.

I'm Not The Fella is a warning not to bring him home for a bit of fun, as he isn't likely to stick around, no he's just another wandering minstrel who will break your heart as he heads down the road again.

Oranges And Apples is a sparing portrait of an early autumn scene, with some arresting imagery that would have had a different impact with a full band as the more forceful playing seems to make clear.

We Let The Stars Go strips the Prefab Sprout classic to its bare bones, allowing the lyrics to really hit home as all the love and wonder shine through.

The album closes with Always one last slow carefully played plea for love and tenderness, hoping you'll be together forever.

Find out more at https://revealrecords.lnk.to/JohnDouglas https://johndouglas.bandcamp.com/album/john-douglas-2023 https://www.facebook.com/thetrashcansinatras

  author: simonovitch

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