Tom Freund “East of Lincoln” (Surf Road Records, 2018)

Timeless virtues are timeless for a reason. At various points they may be fashionable or more (or less) commercial but if the music has them none of that matters as it will endure and be loved and respected regardless of fashion. Which brings us nicely to Tom Freund’s ninth studio album. If you have any love for Tom Petty or are not averse to a slice of West Coast-influenced country rock then ‘East Of Lincoln’ should be your destination.

And even if that doesn’t float your boat then you can still enjoy eleven songs born of experience, songs that chronicle, to use a for once appropriate word, a journey. Intimate, heartfelt and honest, with gorgeous tunes and choruses, it would be a hard heart indeed that wasn’t moved. The title track, which mourns the changes wrought by money to Venice, California where Freund once live, is a beautiful elegy. It’s a tale of gentrification that is relevant the world over and he tells it well. Elsewhere there’s the gorgeous melodies of ‘Homer Simpson’s Clouds (Day Of The Locust)’ and ‘Dream On (Believe In Yourself’), the infectious and radio-friendly ‘Angelus’ and the rockier ‘Hair Of The Dog’, all of which are weapons-grade songs. As is everything here.

8/10

Summary

Classic Americana with echoes of Petty and the West Coast

Author: Jeremy Searle

Deputy Editor & Videos Editor at Americana UK, promoter at Greenbird Promotions, writer for R2 and Maverick magazines, possessor of more CDs than is entirely decent and inveterate hoarder.

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