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Graham Brown | Good 'n Broke (Stomp)
Vancouver based Graham Brown has completely eluded my attention until now even though he has been churning out albums with a number of outfits and solo since the mid 80s. 'Good 'n Broke' is his 2nd solo album and a fine one it is too. It's not unreasonable to assume that he's had to struggle, as many Canadian artists have, with the attention lavished upon the music originating from their southerly neighbours. Perhaps the dogged good-natured persistence of Graham Brown and other similarly talented bands already praised in these parts like Radiogram and Flophouse Jr., will help swing the balance more favourably in future. 'Good 'n Broke' might not be groundbreaking or even all that original. It's certainly not particularly alternative, but damn it's good stuff that's nigh on impossible to fault. There's no stellar line-up of guests in support and no big shot producer in the chair, but Graham Brown doesn't need them. He's got a big heart, catchy, well written songs, great musicians to back him up, whether you've heard of them or not. If you've ever had even a passing affection for a little twang, rockabilly swagger, bluegrass or rousing guitar pop as performed by the likes of Neil Young, Tom Petty or Freedy Johnston then Graham Brown deserves a space in your collection. And who could possibly resist a song called Shotguns, Cacti & Vengeance? Not me.
CWAS #9 - Winter 2002