Chris Bradley - At the Outpost
(17 Seconds Records)
With his angelic vocals and breezy folk aesthetic, this latest release from Aberfeldy man Chris Bradley makes for an engaging listen. At the Outpost never quite manages to rise out of its lower gears though, making for an ultimately frustrating ride. Opening with the Damien Jurado-esque ‘The Man I Love’, Bradley’s 70s-inflected songwriting pokes around the verges of beauty but is just too tentative to rush headlong towards greatness. ‘The Beatles’ is disturbingly quasi-Quo while the stripped-down ‘Your Close Friend’ veers all too swiftly from rousing to risible. Still, there is one killer song in here, ‘Not What It Was,’ with an infectious verse that Richard Ashcroft would steal for these days.