Allred & Broderick – Find The Ways – Album Review
The aim of this collaboration was to create something minimal and they’ve achieved their goal! It features their voices, a violin and an upright bass, and that’s about it. Peter Broderick will be a familiar name to most, but the name David Allred will have a few scratching their heads. He’s not exactly a household name, but he is another multi-instrumentalist who when you listen to his work is a natural bedfellow for Broderick (in the musical sense at least!) This is their first record as a duo, but Broderick has already built up quite a back catalogue with 7 albums (or mini albums) to date. Allred has three albums with his most recent being The Woods only released in September of 2016. Neither struggle with creativity!
This is what Peter Broderick had to say about David and the album – “I sensed a truly unique character in David’s own music that is wonderfully heartfelt and sincere. With this recording David and I set out to make something raw which is an honest document of what we are capable of doing together at once, with just two acoustic instruments and our voices.”
It opens with Living on a Wire, which features all the instruments mentioned above, along with both voices. It is a simple and quite traditional song, played at a slow pace. The Wise One opens violin and vocals, with one playing nicely off the other. The song changes a number of times along its length, heading in different directions.
“There are places to go and things you should know
About the world in which we live, about the world in which we live
It’s a curious, mysterious place full of secrets
And people who live in misery overseen
If we’re all the same, then how can this be
How can this be ” – The Ways
Two Otters is an instrumental with (again) violin and bass. It bops along for a melodic opening before a more sorrowful middle section. Hey Stranger is a slow song for violin and vocal, creeping along in the murky undergrowth. The single ‘The Ways’ is one of the more unusual singles of the year, with just their two voices! Final track Robert Please is a whimsical request to allow them to release ‘7 new albums’. The founder of Erased Records is one Robert Raths!
‘Maybe I’ll go and start a school (school of what?)
Maybe I’m just being a fool, yeah
Or maybe I’ll crawl back tomorrow and beg, beg Robert
To put out seven new albums
Robert, pleeeeeeeease’ – Robert, Please
The album is an experiment in simplicity. The arrangements are unadorned and free from convolution. It shows that you don’t need the bells and whistles. The downside of this is a feeling of repetition in the arrangements, which it avoids for the most part. There are moments where you wonder are these self imposed limitations to their advantage. These are two unusual and interesting artists. Broderick has long been an artist to follow and Allred is a new name to the list. It’s an oddity, but an enjoyable one!
1. Living On A Wire
2. The Wise One
3. Two Otters
4. Hey Stranger
5. Four Aspens
6. The Ways
8. I’m Not Crazy
9. Ode To Angelica
10. Robert, Please