Glen Hornblast Once in a Blue Moon

Hornblast has long been a fixture on the Toronto folk scene, but his work has been seriously under-recorded. That is rectified on this album, a collection of the best songs he's written over the past three decades. Those tunes are well-served by the clean production (and guitar work) of David Gavan Baxter (Catherine MacLellan) and the fine accompaniment of an A-list of T.O. players, including Brian Kobayakawa (Creaking Tree String Quartet), Burke Carroll, Denis Keldie (Prairie Oyster), Chris Whiteley and Shelley Coopersmith. Things begin a little shakily with the slightly saccharine "True Blue Forever," but pick up with the well-crafted, musically varied and melodic original compositions. Hornblast has a sweet, mellow voice occasionally reminiscent of James Taylor or Jesse Winchester. Lyrically, he displays social conscience on "Homeless" and "Isla Mujeres," tunes that are nestled snugly alongside his more personal offerings. This is a pleasing effort. (Independent)