Ron Sexsmith

What's it called?: 
Forever Endeavour
What does it sound like?: 
A typical Ron Sexsmith album,although the production has been stripped right back compared to his last album.As with all Ron's albums it takes a good few listens before you "get it",as it always sounds a bit samey the first time you listen.But when you do "get it " it's wonderful.The first track,Nowhere To Go,sets the tone with its French Horn and beautiful strings.What follows is a masterclass in songwriting.Great melodies with perfect arrangements sung in Ron's inimitable way.The two bonus tracks,Life After a Broken Heart and Autumn Light have lyrics by the great Don Black.Wonderful stuff!
What does it all *mean*?: 
It means that Ron is one of the best singer/songwriters out there,even if he isn't a household name.
Goes well with …: 
A nice glass of red,or a chilled bottle of beer.I usually listen with my headphones on laying on the settee with the lights off.Total relaxation.
Might suit people who like …: 
I like my rock music and I like it loud,but sometimes you just have to put some Ron Sexsmith on to just appreciate some quiet and delicate music for a change.

Comments

There's never any great surprises, but when you do what you do as well as he does, why change?

I remember the first time I encountered Ron. It was in 1996 at Victoria Hall in Halifax, a small but lovely venue. He was the main support act to Difford and Tilbrook on an acoustic tour. I knew nothing of him, but was absolutely captivated. I went out and bought his at that time current album, Other Songs, at the next opportunity.

...is about as close to perfection as an album gets.

absolutely correct. I remember the story at the time of Elvis Costello being so taken with the album that he bought it in bulk and distributed copied around his acquaintances.

Other Songs is just amazing.If any other more famous singer/songwriter would have recorded this it would have sold in the millions,and been lauded as a classic.Absolutely pop perfection!

Was going to post a review today. The last album was his most successful commercially but probably my least favourite not because of the songs but because of the production. With Mitchell Froom back in the producers chair this sounds much more like one of his earlier albums and that's no bad thing. The album is quite melancholic which apparently is due to his own brush with mortality last year due to a health scare. I love the sparseness of the arrangements which allows the songs to breathe. The last track Autumn Light is a beauty.

I also know him a little bit. As on his last few albums I think there are 3 or 4 stone gold tracks on this one, however I find some of the writing a little too sentimental and the tunes sometimes sound a bit familiar. Opening track Nowhere to Go is wonderful (and heartbreaking).

Stormed into the UK charts at 51! (And Albert Hall show next month)

I really, really love Ron Sexsmith; I love his music and, after seeing Love Shines, I warmed to him even more as a person. For all his faults, which he's pretty open about in the film, he seems a thoroughly decent, humble man. I recently started following him on Twitter too, and was happy to see he has a winningly dry sense of humour.

Anyway, yes, the new album has a lovely feel, and is mercifully free of the ghastly autotune that rendered the last album almost unlistenable to me, despite the strength of the songs. It's also nice to note that Mitchell Froom has reined in his tendency to put all sorts of weird clanking noises and very stylised keyboard sounds on his productions. I think it's Ron's best since Retriever, which is, for me, his best, just edging out the first two.

I sent out a couple of tweets a few days ago raving about Forever Endeavour. Shortly afterwards I found myself being followed by his daughter. She'd said something very sweet and loving about him, which really moved me.

Sorry, guys, I really have to disagree with most of the above. Now I consider myself a big fan and really really love the first 2 LPs, the earlier Mitchell Froom productions fitting like a jaunty sock. His quality then took a nose-dive into same old same old. I then was invigorated by the joyfulness of Late Bloomer, give or take the odd clumsy auto-tune, hoping this would be more in that mould. but no, it's back to dullsville regurgitant warbles, further ruined by a horrendously old-fashioned production, clunky orchestrals domineering and dominating, putting me in mind of pop songs from the 60s, when the record companies felt we would be offended by naked guitar and drums, and so smothered any practioners thereof in syrup. I'm thinking of stuff like the Fortunes, Amen Corner and dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich, which could, arguably, have decent songs hiding under the parps and sweeps. What has happened to the Froom quirkiness, or did he use it all up on his ex, Suzanne Vega, where he went to far. (Probably why she left him?) I don't blame Ron except for his fear of progression. It is al production folly, putting me in mind of the excremental embellishments on the last Teddy Thompson, where Mantovani himself might consider it too sweet.

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