Ryan Granville-Martin Mouthparts and Wings

Ryan Granville-MartinMouthparts and Wings
Toronto, ON-based drummer/songwriter/producer Ryan Granville-Martin is modest, or shy, about his skill as a singer, given that he invited talented pals and peers to contribute most of the vocals on this eclectic and highly accomplished album of his art-rock-inclined original material. He does pretty much everything else though, including the bulk of the recording, playing most of the instruments and arranging the strings and horns. The impressive vocal cast includes Martin Tielli, Mia Sheard, Ron Sexsmith, Gavin Gardiner (the Wooden Sky), Mia Sheard, Ford Pier, Nate Mills (Run With The Kittens), Colleen Brown and Daniela Gesundheit (Snowblink). There are also a number of A-list instrumentalists featured, such as Rich Underhill, Dan Goldman, John Showman (the virtuoso fittingly shines on "Violins"), Kurt Swinghammer, Paul Linklater and Chris Gartner. Gesundheit shines on the hauntingly ethereal "Welcome Honey," as does Brown on the sweetly horn-inflected "Eight." Tielli is at his lushly theatrical best on "The Prisoner," while it's a treat to hear Sexsmith covering another writer, rather than vice versa, doing a lovely job on "All Good Things." "A Prayer For Own Meany" is an instrumental with a cinematic feel, and Granville-Martin does contribute more than respectable vocals to two compositions: the dramatic "Jackhammer Burden" and the string-driven, lyrical "St. Barnabas." Let's hope for more from this formidable talent. (Independent)