Dean Owens - New York Hummingbird
- Brian Donaldson
- 28 February 2012
Release from Edinburgh-based tunesmith a mixed bag
Could it be that Dean Owens suffers from Ron Sexsmith Syndrome? RSS is that little-publicised but extremely frustrating affliction which strikes talented singer-songwriters who are perfectly capable of crafting a gloriously melodic tune but, for reasons best known to themselves, refuse to do so on a more regular basis. New York Hummingbird, Edinburgh-based Owens’ fourth CD, features enough examples of tunesmithery gone right (the lovely ‘No One’s a Failure’ and sprightly ‘Baby Fireworks’) to make the flat downsides all-too troubling to hear.
Unlike Sexsmith, he is occasionally prone to bum-clenchingly icky lyrical interludes such as the forgetting/remembering motif in ‘The One That Got Away’ and the title track which namechecks a long list of folk-pop icons who Owens presumably wishes he might one day emulate.