When not busy with their solo projects, Joseph Parsons (who also fronts US Rails) and Todd Thibaud like to work together on a joint effort. Contributing five songs each Eden is their third, each taking lead on their own material, but also harmonising on the choruses, a collection of acoustic, at times almost campfire, numbers glow with a gentle warmth and are permeated by reflections on the changes that come with growing older, as relationships and dreams fade away and hope takes on different shapes.
At times reminiscent of Tom Rush, Thibaud’s husked trebly tones gets things rolling with the lilting strum of Everything Changes before Parsons, deep, dark and warbling like Gordon Lightfoot, weighs in with the world weary When Nothing Left Is True.
And so the alternation goes with the duo’s balance of intimate confessions and wistful observations, Thibaud’s search for salvation in Cost of Eden echoed in the refusal to break in Parsons’ Dreams We Dare and Hollwyood’s fragile hope of faith in time of desperation.
Heart That Never Falters and Near You sees Thibaud respectively address breaking and enduring relationships while Parsons contemplates mortality on the waltzingly hymnal Time Is Due and wintry sounding album closer Waterfalls, which musically puts me in mind of I Come And Stand At Every Door.
The mood and musical tenor doesn’t vary greatly, though Near You does pick up the tempo slightly as a sort of cowboy jazz shuffle, but the melodies are both simple and sublime, the emotion palpable and the voices, both alone and together, quite soulfully magnificent.
Review by: Mike Davies