Beaver Nelson Little Brother

The final cut on this album is a gem. A bold, self-revelatory track, "My Bones Will Be the Picture Frame" is a startling glimpse into despair and drug addiction from someone who you just know has been there. Punctuated with the breathtaking and suspenseful arrangements of the Grooveline Horns, it is a track that crackles with rock bottom sentiment, providing a stunning bookend to what is an otherwise hit and miss affair. Certainly, Beaver is earnest, his musings on loves lived and lost are at times philosophical, as in "Scattered," where he sings in a touching contralto. On another track, the vibe gets funky, sounding for like a Spin Doctors tune. Mostly, though, this album is country/folk rock of the been there, heard that variety. The songs, which all clock in at around three-and-a-half minutes, never allow the players to sustain the momentum they clearly ache to achieve. Jams are non-existent and solos are clipped and short, as though the band is afraid of what might happen should they get too enthusiastic. A solid, well produced effort that's lacking only in the imagination that could make these tunes really cook. (Louisiana Red Hot)