We are continuing the series of guestblogs with this one by Brian Porick, who came out to see us in Geneva, IL. Thanks Brian!
‘I had the privilege of catching Jason Harrod play a backyard concert in Geneva, IL thanks to our gracious hosts, David Jennings and his family. This was a rare opportunity to see Jason play with a rhythm section, something that I’ve never seen in over fifteen years of attending his live performances. Drummer Gerko Tempelman and bassist Toby Hazlet adequately supported Jason, although it seemed as if both guys were still in the process of learning Jason’s tunes since they tended to lean on simpler patterns (which is understandable this early in the tour. I’m hoping for the sake of the hard core fans that Toby can make it a goal to pull off the amazing bass riff from the second verse of the recorded version of “Siren Song.”)
Fans were treated to just shy of twenty tunes over two hours, a nice mix of classics (“Waiting on My Day”, “Siobhan”, and “Carolina”) and songs off Jason’s new record, “Highliner.”
Speaking of the record, it is more of a musical descendant of Jason’s Americana-heavy “Living in Skin” than the most recent “Bright As You” album, with its Nashville polish. Here you find eleven tracks that are largely up-tempo yet lean harder on folk forms and arrangements. However, instead of being strictly two-step rhythm section treatments, the album blooms (especially in its back half) with tasteful strings and woodwind support, adding a lushness that no previous Jason Harrod release has achieved. Even long-time tour novelty song “Nemo Incognito” gets its appropriate treatment with its grooving tempo against a fantastic 60’s TV theme song string arrangement, managing to sit nicely alongside folkier fare such as “When I Came Down Off the Mountain” and “One of These Days.” This album is full of top-drawer Jason Harrod songwriting while also moving his recorded sound forward, and will be an enjoyable listen for newcomers as well as old-timers.’
Photos by Brian Porick
Click here to preorder Highliner,and to download a free track.