Kevin Hearn and Thin Buckle The Miracle Mile

Kevin Hearn’s music is like a dream. Not a dream come true necessarily, but something surreal that is somehow tangible; a real experience that is tricky to grasp. The pop artist of the Barenaked Ladies, Hearn’s reputation as a gifted multi-instrumentalist precedes him on The Miracle Mile, his latest solo effort that is an effortless offering to Canada’s great tradition of hoser prog pop. As much as the Ron Sexsmith co-penned "Rescue Us” plods along, the Great Bob Scott’s drums move the fascinating "Lancaster Bomber” along at a visceral clip. "Map of the Genome” bears some resemblance to Tim Vesely’s recent Rheostatics output, while "In the Country” sounds futuristic in spite of its rhythmic allegiance to Otis Redding’s "I Can’t Turn You Loose.” Sexsmith’s pen turns up again for the ambient folk of "Here for You” and the title track has all the majesty of a song from The Wizard of Oz. Hearn’s vision remains romantically innocent, which somehow jives well with the advanced musicianship on The Miracle Mile. (Warner)