Danny Marks Big Town Boy

Some have labelled this as an "oldies fix” but that really isn’t the point. Local hero/radio DJ/guitar god Danny Marks grew up like the rest of us, glued to his radio and grooving to his who’s who of forty-fives in his personal quest for whatever it is that good music does for the soul. Across 14 tracks, Danny celebrates the spirit of the originals as he gives tribute to the core of the magic between ’63 and ’70, with a clear focus on Toronto chart intenders including his own Edward Bear (who struck gold in ’70 with "You, Me & Mexico” — brilliantly updated here). He not only succeeds in recapturing the glory days of rock’n’roll, rockabilly and everything in-between, but he manages to underline the excitement of the entire British Invasion in the process. And while Danny’s guitar has long acted as his true voice, on this recording, his actual singing voice takes front and centre with the elasticity to deliver on all of the above (try "Nothin’” on). Brilliant arrangements achieve a casual feel, which is so much harder to pull off than it may seem. This well-produced work-of-art emanates the warmth of the originals as it injects additional heart along the way. This is no oldies retread — it’s a progressive step forward, having borrowed from the past, before taking it to the next stage. Big Town Boy is a rare indie release deserving of a global party audience for having crystallised, if not energised, this time period so expertly. (Independent)