A record title and an artist who go together like a blanket on white sheets. Mike Feuerstack had more than one good reason to call his latest album “Sentimental Gentleman”. It’s neither fishing for compliments nor an overestimation when the singer/songwriter from Montreal points out in the title track that he’s a guy to “write songs that make the grown man cry”. Under the moniker Snailhouse he has released various albums that are filled with heart warming melodies and reflective lyrics. Besides his solo project, the Canadian musician also plays in the Juno award winning avantguarde instrumental band Bell Orchestre and accompanies folk singer Angela Desveaux on guitar.
In the title track Feuerstack sings “I know you’re feeling bad/ I want to make it all right”, you could call this a philosophy in terms of his music and personal life. “Sentimental Gentleman” means more than just another folk and country influenced album to be consumed. “I am not actuated by principle, but by something much stronger – Sentiment.” This quote by Mark Twain can be found in the liner notes to the record and the ten songs reflect this in every aspect. This is music to dive into, to empathize with and to think about. The questions asked here, are similar to the ones you ask yourself everyday. Mike Feuerstack is intelligent enough not to claim that he sees through it all, but he does offer some food for thought in his words, he is a positive thinker but without the naivety or ignorance to the fact that life isn’t always peaches and cream.
the grim reaper sees the movie of his life
as it flashes before him
right in the moment he dies
won’t he wonder who was running the show?
who was the director and who was in the starring role?
This line from the bluesy “Clean Water” is a more than adequate example of his lyrical talent.
Musically, Mike Feuerstack has relied on a close circle of friends to help set the tone of “Sentimental Gentleman”. These include Jeremy Gara of ‘Arcade Fire’ who mixed the album and Angela Desveaux who provides backing vocals.
Even if it wouldn’t exactly fit the personality of Mike Feuerstack to be some kind of scene hero, it is hoped that “Sentimental Gentleman” will finally get this experienced artist the attention he deserves.
Listen to Sentimental Gentleman
photo Credit: Robin Hart-Hiltz