Graham Brown And The Prairie Dogs Do What You Should

As with so many Canadian roots artists, Graham Brown fares better outside our borders than within. The veteran songsmith was a founding member of the wonderful Jr. Gone Wild back in 1984, and then led his own bands Brilliant Orange and Happyman. Such subsequent solo albums as Good ‘N Broke and Stand Your Ground were well received, and this new outing maintains the quality level. There’s nothing groundbreaking here, just melodic and well-written material that would appeal to Blue Rodeo fans, for instance. "The Wandering Kind,” an album highlight, has an Everly Brothers feel, and there’s a Dylan-esque harmonica sound on "Á Good Talkin To.” The social commentary here (as on "Incredible”) isn’t quite as convincing as Brown’s more personal material, the latter fuelled by his warm and honest vocal approach. Guest players add piano, organ, fiddle, slide (from the excellent Robbie Steininger) to the guitar, bass and drums core of the Prairie Dogs, and there’s a nice variety of tempos and tones here. (Bongo Beat)