Album review by Stephen Wake
'Brothers in Brooklyn' by The Dreaming Spires is built on the foundation of songs by Robin and Joe Bennett, put together with a collection of musical friends and supporters at the Oxford University Music Factory. It's an album that wears its influences proudly on its sleeve citing Big Star, The Byrds, Gram Parsons and The Band and as a result at times can feel a bit dated.
Having said that, there are some surprising gems tucked away amongst the nostalgia. The male/female vocal harmony and country tinged 'Laughing & Dancing' had me rewinding back to a Bonnie Prince Billy live show I saw earlier this year. The hauntingly beautiful 'Strength of Strings' which starts with a stripped back feel and builds to a lush crescendo also caught my ear.
The album finishes off with 'The Dream Inspires' a song that Wayne Coyne would be proud of. It is said that imitation is the highest form of flattery, so let’s just hope Wayne doesn’t do a Cat Stevens as The Dreaming Spires channel The Flaming Lips’ 'All We Have is Now'. 'Brothers in Brooklyn' is an album that could quite easily be passed over on the first listen. My advice take the time and give it a chance, you won’t regret it.
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