Brian Ashley Jones
October 8, 2007
Jones releases “Courier”, which features 11 songs that, together, make an album of sheer beauty and a world of promise. The opener, Free To Miss You is an uptempo country-folk song that has a nice ring to it. Jones’ subtly builds a sound reminiscent of the early/mid 70s (think Eagles, Little River Band, just a bit more folky) in which this song comes to full bloom. After the strong start, the album continues with the radio friendly Courier. The gritty title track is a classic country love song in the making. The catchy beat and powerful vocal performance by Jones simply gets you.
Take is one of Brian Ashley Jones very best songs. He shows his talent as both a songwriter and guitarist on this song, while his passionate and powerful vocals give this song so much feeling. No wonder he was a finalist at last years Flat Rock Music Festival’s Emerging Songwriter Contest. And seemlessly effortless the album continues with another potential radio single. More Than Survive is one of those songs that just gets better and better. After these excellent songs, Jones goes off in another direction with an all instrumental song. Pull ‘em Up, which you might recognize from the TV show ‘Road Trip Nation’, is an excellent showcase of Brian Ashley Jones’ musical capabilities. He mixes together different styles into one big mix that he executes very well.
The poppy Johnny Appleweed is a potential hit single, with its singable melody and recognizable character story. Combine this with Brian’s lively delivery of the song and you have all the right ingredients for success. The bluesy Think It Over showcases Jones’ guitar skills as this is the best part of the song. It’s a pretty good song apart from that too, but with the standards Jones is setting for himself I don’t consider it to be his best on this album.
But with Maybe Then we have another gem on our hands. The gentle and mid-tempo rootsy pop song has the ability to crossover into AC radio as well as country radio. It’s a good middle way and especially Jones’ vocals come out perfectly. And though there’s a certain contrast with the former song, As Of Yet is a natural continuation of the album. The lack of vocals is something you hardly notice because Brian is able to let the instruments speak (especially his guitar). The song tells a story without words, which makes it even better, in my opinion.
With a tad rockabilly, Jones provides another great guitar song. I Ain’t Jokin’ has a bluesy, rockabilly sound and provides the opportunity to show vocal versatility for Jones. The groovy vocals and precise guitar playing make this one of the very best songs on “Courier”. We now arrive at the very ending of the album, unfortunately. The sweet country ballad A Song To Move Me with its emotional feel and heartfelt delivery is a stellar way to end this impressive record.
With “Courier”, Brian Ashley Jones establishes himself as a rootsy singer/songwriter/guitarist/multi-instrumentalist to watch. His music showcases the highest of qualities and is both enigmatic and powerful. His music moves you and his skills impress you. “Courier” is a must hear for fans of this kind of music.