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Paul Miro - 'Sinombré Volume Two: Broken Angels' Album Review


1. Nothing Left Here (Part III)

2. The Big Blowdown

3. Light Of The World

4. Build My Gallows High

5. Ghosthouse

6. Blue Hours, Red Light

7. Free & Equal

8. Nichts Mehr Geben

9. Dark Night Of The Soul

10. Dimestring

11. Too Late Now

12. This Is Your Life

13. The Last Siren

14. Broken Angel

15. Give Something Back

16. Nothing Left Here

This is a very different flavour to the music I usually review, much more Alt-Rock Americana, Paul Miro is a name I've heard mentioned several times from different sources and by all accounts a talented individual. This album has given me an insight into what everyone else sees in his work (and made me wonder why I wasn't already listening to his stuff). It's not usually my favourite style of music but every now and again I do like to unwind to a bit of Steve Earle, there I've made my one name-check that works with this album.

'Broken Angels' is the subtitle of this, the second part of the story arc started in "Sinombre 1: All Hope Is Gone" so, in fact, I'm coming in here halfway through the movie, not that this has dented my appreciation of this album (it has added another album to my want-list though).

I'm a guitarist so I do like a bit of good guitar work and this album is resplendent with fantastic performances turned in on Dobro, slide guitar, acoustic and electric, making it a fascinating listen on a musical level, in fact great lyrical guitar solos abound throughout the album, wherever it serves the song. The storytelling here is first-rate, as it is the second part of the series I did a bit of reading up on what I missed and looked back, apparently this is continuing the story of what had been conceived as a dystopian future view, don't let that put anyone off though, there are some choruses here that could definitely be chanted along by an audience, there's light and shade here in the music making throughout so some dark lyrical subjects are offset by the aforementioned superb performances.

Whether setting up some fantastic atmospheres with what could be marimba or xylophone (or maybe it's a keyboard) on 'Free & Equal' before jumping into a rocking electric chorus or singing german in a choral setting on 'Nichts Mer Geben' this is an album with a lot of surprises (the trumpet solo on 'Broken Angel' is a majestic thing of beauty) and a good number of choruses that will stay with you long after the last listen (if you're anything like me for having tunes stuck in your head).

There's an incredible depth to this album and the storytelling herein, there comes a point shortly after halfway through (the ballad 'Too Late Now') when there is a lift in the music as though the sun has come out, a relief washed over me, I was caught up, that for me was the real hook. A moment when Paul's lyrics suggest hope and desire to reach a positive outcome.

As the album rolled on it became harder and harder to stop listening, it also became more difficult to live with the Americana tag I stuck on this release at the start of the review (to be honest, I only left it there, so I could retract it here). I found myself finding a subtle progressive vein here in the flow of the songs as a concept album, in the unusual (for the musical style) instruments occasionally employed.

Paul knows how to build a world you can almost see, through the lyrics and finely crafted music here (side-note Paul's blog on his website makes for interesting reading too, apparently he has Synaesthesia (meaning he sees sounds as colours something he uses as a songwriting tool)). This might well be my first taste of Mr Miro's work but I would be remiss if I were to make it my last visit to his musical world.

Review - Mike McLaughlin

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