Tuesday 21 February 2017

Music: Last of the Country Gentlemen by Josh T Pearson * * * *

(Mute)

Published 18/03/2011 | 05:00

Lift to Experience were an offbeat Texan band that obsessed John Peel at the start of the decade. Little has been heard of them -- or their eccentric leader, Josh T Pearson -- since releasing just one album, the conceptual The Texas-Jerusalem Crossroads.

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Turns out Pearson moved to Paris and continued to write music and this hugely impressive solo debut suggests his time in the French capital was well spent.

Clocking in at seven songs -- several exceeding 10 minutes in length -- this is a classic confessional album, with one searingly personal song after the next.

The singer has described the songcraft as 'therapy', and it's easy to see why as he lifts a lid on failed relationships and troublesome demons.

With a voice that recalls Nick Cave at its most spectral and a modest palate of acoustic guitar and piano, Pearson has fashioned material to burn a hole in your heart.

Besides being a contender for song title of the year, Honeymoon's Great! Wish You Were Her is as nakedly honest and every bit as remarkable as Johnny Cash in his prime.

Remarkably, the album was recorded in just two days last year. He brings his bittersweet tunes to Dublin's Workman's Club on March 26.

Burn it: Honeymoon's Great! Wish You Were Her

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