City and Colour – The Love Still Held Me Near [Review]

Review: JD Garrahy


If music soothes the savage beast, then Dallas Green’s music must further calm said beast. Like a fine wine, City & Colour just seem to get better with age. As we venture into Mr Green’s latest offering, it’s nothing short of brilliant. Let me elaborate.

The first track on the album says it all, ‘Meant To Be‘. And that is exactly what this is in every way. Simply, meant to be. Green’s relaxing riffs and gentle voice speak directly to your soul from the first note. There’s no other way to put it.

As we go through the next 2 tracks ‘Underground‘ and ‘Fucked It Up‘, the playfulness in the lyrics of the latter further draw you into the album and ready you for what is a masterfully laid out album. For me personally,

Title track, ‘The Love Still Held Me Near‘ is a fantastic track that blends his signature vocals with acoustic riffs and distorted dirty lead guitar work that’s reminiscent of blues greats such as John Lee Hooker and BB King. There is no way to describe how in awe of this track I am, it’s breathtaking.

A Little Mercy’ gets the tempo moving a little faster, but still remains as relaxing as the aforementioned songs. “Will we ever heal” he asks as we move into a magnificent chorus that gives a great indication of the range that Dallas has in his voice. ‘Things We Choose To Care About‘ brings the tempo down once more, but as you listen to the lyrics, it’s easy to see that this is a very heartfelt song from this talented Canadian. Pure bliss.

After Disaster‘ and ‘Without Warning‘ are a pair of songs that feel like you should be in front of a fire with a good whiskey in hand after a rough day. The ability he has to not only relax you with his voice, but then compliments it further with amazing instrumentals is remarkable to say the least.

Hard, Hard Time‘ has more of a rock vibe to it and gets the toe tapping along to the beat. The percussion perfectly accentuating the dulcet guitar tones to make this a stand out track for the album.

Following this with ‘The Water Is Coming‘ is just masterful track arrangement, the production team really outdid themselves with how well they placed the tracks.

Finishing with ‘Bow Down To Love‘ and ‘Begin Again‘ is the ultimate conclusion to such a phenomenal album. To close out an album with these two tracks is the most enjoyable and fitting end to what seems to be a very well thought out album.

City & Colour just seem to go from strength to strength and this album is unequivocal proof of this. Don’t sleep on it when this album drops, listen to it from first to last note as early as possible. You won’t be disappointed.

City and Colour – The Love Still Held Me Near is out March 31st Via Cooking Vinyl
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