Butchers Blind: A Place in America

ButchersBlind_APlaceInHeavenSuperb EP of pop-inflected Americana

This Long Island band just gets better with each release. The early demos of their debut, One More Time, were accomplished and perfectly unpolished, and though the songwriting, playing and production has matured over the course of five years, songwriter Pete Mancini hasn’t lost the emotional wear that makes his singing so appealing. Their last full-length, Destination Blues, explored the realizations and disappointments that set in with age, but this new EP gets up from the couch to seek action. Mancini doesn’t leave his new found knowledge behind, but uses it to prompt forward motion rather than wallow in place.

The addition of keyboards gives several songs new timbres, and Eric “Roscoe” Ambel’s mix puts everything in balance. The band balances country, rock and pop, with “Black & White Dreams” suggesting both Jackson Browne and Matthew Sweet, and the whistling organ of “Twisting in the Wind” adding a soulful touch to the electric guitars. The album’s title track is a centerpiece that builds from snapshots of a tattered American dream to a refrain whose yearning wish is spurred by ever more insistent guitars. The arc of Butchers Blind’s catalog is the sound of a band finding themselves, and this EP is their best self yet. [©2016 Hyperbolium]

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