Iain Petrie – I’ll Stay By You

3 05 2008

Thanks to Mikey Serpico, we have a great review of Iain Petrie’s album I’ll Stay by You. Petrie’s music is as laid back as it can get. It’s a perfect listen after a hard day at work, when all you want to do is relax while having a quiet drink.

AS I LISTENED to Iain Petrie’s debut album, two thoughts kept coming back to me:

First, albums like I’ll Stay By You may not top the charts, but they have a timeless quality. I’m reminded of James Taylor and John Martyn, but I’m also thinking that this is the kind of record Paul McCartney should still be making.

Second, I’ve been reading this book about writing fiction, and the author states that a good writer doesn’t necessarily have to shy away from cliches. Iain Petrie doesn’t break much new ground lyrically, but he sings with such melodic charm that it doesn’t matter.

Within the first two tracks of I’ll Stay By You, Petrie and his band (which, in fact, consists of him playing most of the instruments) produce the kind of upbeat melodic pop music which echoes in your head even when you’re not listening to it. “High On The Mountain” serves up a vignette of folk pop guitars that swirl around the vocal harmonies; “Steal Away” carries on the vein of memorable melodies and has a cracking counter-tenor.

Petrie has a nice range as a vocalist, and the minimal accompaniment on some of the slower numbers like the title track “I’ll Stay By You” with it’s subtle fingerpicking and melancholic vocals allows you to notice his singing. Another slow burner which is instantly recognised after the first chorus is “The Awakening”, which smoulders for four minutes then explodes in a climax of spiralling lead guitars.

“Connect To The Heart” has another sing-along chorus, and “A Celebration” is another good-timey tune. “Let Go To Love” comes close to being a power ballad, but that’s OK by me. And then there’s one of my favourites “Through Your Eyes”, which Petrie dedicates in the sleeve notes to his son JJ.

The album ends appropriately enough with “It Comes and Goes,” which reminds me of a powerhouse, sweat-soaked ending to a ’60s soul revue: B-3 organs, call-and-response vocals, everything’s all-right-in-the-end vibe. Overall Iain Petrie manages to tap into his spirituality and has the upbeat melodicism to deliver

I’ll Stay By You is soulful and stirring. Iain Petrie is also one talented multi-instrumentalist.

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2 responses

18 06 2008
onyinye

I love the track Ill stay bye you its nice to see that their are many that enjoy music like that here <33 good luck with your blog

24 09 2008
Anonymous

seen ian live with his band. what a night!!! the energy he gives off i awesome!!

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