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The Violet Hush, by Johnny Bennett, is not something you would typically expect from an LA artist; its blues and folk sound is more reminiscent of something born in the south. There are no frills with these songs, no production theatrics. Just straightforward and to the point.

The album begins with some jangly guitar chords on the title track, which includes what seems to be a rarity these days; a guitar solo. “Sister Pharmaceutical” follows with a bit more energy but for only two minutes before song three immediately slows things back down with a lazy blues/rock structure. Things start to get a little more pop with “Done With It” and continue through the next two songs. “World On Fire” goes back to the blues/rock sound but adding some typical slide guitar. Although short, it does provide another burst of energy before the following acoustic ballads which are probably the most individual songs of the album. Starting with “One Night Bag” with a strong Cat Stevens sound, from vocals to guitar chords and playing style. Next is “Lights On In The Drive” which can be described in much the same way but with a more contemporary chorus. The final song is rather unexpected being more jazz than blues or folk or rock, but offers an upbeat ending and features some well placed jazz piano parts.

The entire album is very basic in sound and song structure. It’s not exactly unique and there are no real surprises. However, there are a couple acoustic gems and the album overall flows smoothly and it’s simplicity and traditional influences make it an easy album to get to know.

Jonathan Goller – COMFORT COMES