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Liam Frost - We Ain't Got No Money, Honey, But We Got Rain

Liam Frost, We Ain't Got No Money, Honey, But We Got Rain

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3.5 out of 5

LIAM Frost, hailed by some as Manchester’s finest singer-songwriter, returns with a more resolutely upbeat sophomore album in the form of the semi-appealing We Ain’t Got No Money, Honey, But We Got Rain.

While his 2006 debut, Show Me How The Spectres Dance, understandably dwelled heavily on the impact of losing his father and older brother, his latest is dominated by love songs.

“It has a more optimistic feel,” says Liam. “The last album had so many bleak moments. I’m only 25 and I wanted to make a fun record before I hit 30. Then I can do all that maudlin stuff and turn into Leonard Cohen!”

The more positive tone is reflected in the album’s name, which is taken from a poem by prime influence Charles Bukowski, as well as in the lyrics, which are designed to talk about love in difficult circumstances.

There’s also a wealth of ambition, with songs such as Sparks and Shipwrecks weaving fascinating tales and abounding with thought-provoking lyrics.

Skylark Avenue, for instance, alludes to money hidden in a knicker drawer, while Two Hearts twists two very contrasting strands together – an unabashed love song and subtle suggestions of darker times. The lyrical references to sharks, water thick with blood and being the “architects of our own disaster” emerge as a prime example of the imaginative approach Frost adopts.

The aforementioned Shipwrecks, meanwhile, can lay claim to one of the more striking lines on the whole LP, with: “When you lay with dogs/then you’ll wake with fleas…”

Most of the time, the songs match the quality of the lyrics as well… even though some take more time to get used to than others.

Shipwrecks is one that pays slow reward to patient listeners, and are more serious and epic in structure than the breezier Two Hearts and the Martha Wainwright duet, Your Hand In Mine, which was written alongside Ed Harcourt and is one of the obvious highlights.

Final track Orchestra of Love, meanwhile, rounds things off big in ballsy pop fashion to ensure you leave the experience with a smile on your face.

Also co-written with Ed Harcourt, it’s a finger-clicking, doo-wop inspired swing song decked in delicious harmonies.

Frost may not cater for every taste, but his latest album should – at the very least – win him a lot more fans. He’s an artist worth getting to know…

Download picks: Orchestra of Love, Shipwrecks, Two Hearts, Skylark Avenue, Good Things Are Coming Our Way

Track listing:

  1. Held Tightly In Your Fist
  2. Good Things Are Coming Our Way
  3. Younger Boys Older Girls
  4. Two Hearts
  5. Sparks
  6. Shipwrecks
  7. Skylark Avenue
  8. Your Hand In Mine
  9. Leading Lights And Luminaries
  10. Orchestra Of Love