By J.P. Kallio
A few months back I got a recommendation on Twitter to check out Chris Knights music. We seem to have lots of places for discovering new music these days, Spotify being a big one, Soundcloud one of my favourites and obviously YouTube, but personally for me it has been other music fans recommendations through Twitter that has made me to spend my hard earned cash in a record store, or on the downloads in iTunes. I have always been a big fan of having the physical product, like CD or even Vinyl, but lately a lot of the music I’ve been listening to has been hard to get my hands on in the record shops in Dublin… And my patience on a good day is like that of a five year old kid So I am warming up to the downloads.
Anyway, back to the topic. I checked out a few of Chris’s live videos and I was sold. Chris Knights new album “Little Victories” grabbed me straight from the intro of the first track “In the Mean Time” acoustic guitar and mandolin laying a subtle rhythm, Chris’s little bit raspy and little bit wispy voice states: “Sometime I wonder where my next dollar is gonna come from” and I think to myself, OK, I know where he is coming from, I can get on board with this. The full band kicks in and there is just nothing here not to like. Most songs on the album are arranged very tastefully. The backing band lays a dirty bluesy country base, still leaving Chris enough space to tell his stories. And boy does he tell it well. There is no doubting here that the man has spent years perfecting his craft. There is no one sitting on a tailgate, sipping on a bud light in Chris’s songs, his word craft is well thought out and staying away from the usual cliches. Quite a bit on a darker side, but hey, I’m all for that. Still there is a great subtle appreciation for the everyday life in here, the album title track “Little Victories” being a great example of this. Also the the sentiment in the bare bones “Out of This Hole” is a great reminder that it is up to us to change whatever is wrong in our life’s.
Chris creates great characters in his songs and places them in a real life situation, which makes this an album you can easily relate to. I can see many lovers of musical categories scratching their heads trying to find a suitable box for Chris Knight, who wonderfully balances in that cross road between blues, rock and country. Simple, but powerful music, check it out!
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