The Rockin' Magpie Review Sept 17th 2020
Destined to Linger Long in The Memory
One of the biggest problems at RMHQ is trying to keep up to date with all of the new releases that find their way to our little Nissen Hut in the North of England (South of Heaven!) and inadvertently some beauties fall by the wayside; which is what happened here; until my trusty IPhone re-discovered it last week on a car journey around the Yorkshire Dales.
The song in question was the opening track, Growing Old which was the perfect soundtrack to the day in question.
Very easy on the ear and with a ‘warm’ production and in Jenkins we have a singer cut from the same cloth as such disparate singers as Roger Whitaker, Graham Nash, Chris Difford and; dare I say it John Lennon?
While coming from Merseyside like Lennon, John Jenkins also has a soft enunciation to his words that owes more to the South side of the River Mersey than the North.
Jenkins appears to have ‘been around a bit’ and that comes across in his mature songwriting style and, just like the opener; in the subject matter he sings about.
Erring on the Americana side of Folk; This Mountain Between Us, I’m Almost Over You and, more especially the tender A Mother’s Devotion are all stateless in such a way the listener has no idea as to where the singer is singing about; be it Merseyside or deepest Arkansas; it matters not ……. all are wonderful songs from an all encompassing idiom.
There’s even a gentle Celtic lilt to Heartlands; a song that isn’t especially Irish but certainly Irish in it’s deep sensibilities and harmonies too.
The album title says it all really; this is a collection of laid-back and Grown Up observational tales that are generally very well constructed; all though one or two songs could do with a bit of editing, maybe losing one or two words in the stanzas?
This is music after all and not a bodice ripper novel.
Which brings us to my choice of Favourite Song; which hasn’t been easy; as the title track is very easy on the ear and heart too; as is A Wiser Man Than Me which just aches with longing.
Then there is Daniel White; a tragically beautiful epic condensed into two and a half melancholic minutes; and then the song that I’m making my actual Favourite Song; Jackson’s Farm which starts with a clap of thunder and Jenkins’ acoustic guitar is accompanied by a rainstorm for the next couple of minutes on a heart crushing song of lost love.
Sometimes I have to look back, to see that I haven’t missed anything of great importance and I’m glad I did this time; as while this album probably won’t win any National Awards it will linger long in the memory of all who buy it.
Released June 2020