If a record's got soul, it's worth hiding it behind an acoustic guitar and a man yelp.
While the folk growl and one man touring show used to be a punk rock faux pas, it has become an essential element to a growing community.
The main troublemaker this time is Bob Nanna; former 'mo main man and current indie bard. The work is American Diary - Nanna's second solo outing under the nom de plume The City On Film.
Nanna was a Braid boy; part of the punk rocking past that is currently responsible for much myspace mirror clenching and the proliferation of all stop/start angular algorithms. He was also part of the Hey Mercedes gang, the Vagrant scamps that fell in with the Get Up Kids/A3 agitators back around the turn of the century. But, NOW he is The City On Film and his latest vinyl prop is a collection of acoustic assaults and rumbling post-DC rock cries, ignoring all past glories.
American Diary is a short, snappy storyboard of solo sounds. From the melancholic Wainwright-goes-midwest-yokel opening of 'Mary, I'm Ready'> to the thump-thump post Promise Ring-ness of 'Pony's Last Trick', it screams and whispers extended indie eloquence. Imagine if Pedro The Lion ran a camp theatre songschool...
'Astray! Astray!' is a Saddle Creek moment, one that is post throat cancer Oberst rather than Wood-era Conor cassette crooning, while 'You're Gonna Need That Patience Soon' would rather hang out with previous Nanna output such as 'Movie Music Volume One'.
The record, which includes help from Seattle’s punk rock shark movers Minus The Bear, is Nanna's follow up to 'In Formal Introduction', itself a noise worth noting, albeit slightly more pomp-tastic. American Diary is both inspiring and vital and deserves to be discovered swiftly.