Loomer Songs of the Wild West Island

Loomer prove it pays to persevere, their sophomore release picking up where the last left off. Anyone savouring a hickory wind over the tang of jet exhaust or wide-open spaces to city skylines will rejoice in Loomer’s lonely sound, blending world-weary with a dark horse joie de vivre. Consider "Bang The Nails” (one of 12 pristine, rock solid originals underscoring a distinctly powerful songwriting talent), which erupts into an otherworldly blend of McGuinn’s Byrds and McCulloch’s Bunnymen torn and further twisted by Jim Whitford’s delicious pedal steel. From out of the gloom bursts "Anastasia,” its delicate petals pushing sunward in one goose bump-inducing love song that transforms into a vast, sweeping anthem. The sticky confection that is "Caramel Heart,” suggesting Ron Sexsmith on peyote, transforms itself into an oversized hook of dramatic proportions. "Old Grey Ford” injects banjo into the band’s mix, adding a down-home feel while providing an uplifting foil to Loomer’s poetically mournful temperament. The energy-laden "Dirt Angel” is a full-on charge recalling L.A.’s Long Ryders, Mike Taylor’s keyboard assault standing tall, while the simple, straightforward "Turnbuckle” boasts a sweet chorus and pedal steel/piano accompaniment that evokes Gram mid-burrito. Triumphant highlight "Sunday Driver Down” is a joyful, full-throated, four-minute vision of grandeur that burrows deep into the brain. Wild West Island may not, in fact, represent the Second Coming but it’s surely a stone’s roll away. (Newtone)