Friday, July 2, 2010
Alejandro Escovedo: Street Songs of Love
It would be hard to beat punk-rock survivor Alejandro Escovedo's 2008 effort, Real Animal. And I'm not sure his new follow-up record, Street Songs of Love, quite does it.
But it's pretty damned close. Whereas Real Animal was very autobiographical, Street Songs is, as the title suggests, a set of songs about love -- pure and not so pure -- that gets its beautiful depth and scruffy character from someone who's seen the best and worst of life.
This time around, Escovedo is bringing a couple of friends with him. The Boss himself shows up on the rocker "Faith." That's something of a role reversal, since it was Escovedo playing "Always A Friend" onstage with Springsteen and the E Street Band a couple years back.
Ian Hunter also lends his inimitable voice on the sad but masterfully produced "Down In The Bowery." That production work is again handled by Chuck Prophet, who uses a female chorus to sprinkle a liberal dose of fun, retro oohs and yeaahs throughout the album.
Other standout tracks include the rocker "Anchor," and "Street Songs," the cool rapping title track. Whether you're a longtime Escovedo fan or just looking to get your feed wet, Street Songs is easy to love.