This is excellent – pure and simple.  Chicago singer-songwriter Brandon Cunningham delivers four absolutely stunning tracks on this latest E.P., Giveout.  From sparse and haunting to lush and textured, this young musician knows how to write a song and convey the emotions that make these songs stand out so strongly.

Opening with “Baby”, my instant reaction was that he’d listened to Big Star’s 3rd – the space of acoustic guitars and few lyrical lines would suggest inspiration from a track like “Kanga Roo”.  The beauty of this track is that it builds up slowly, only to drop and pull itself back in the most satisfying way.  “Bush Wives” has a surf-guitar feel to go with the “big room” production – a dramatic, full number that rocks.  “Doubt” is slow, dark and layered, reaching to a cacophony of feedback towards the end but never dreary and “Lines In The Sand” veers towards a country-feel and is the most bare-boned of the four songs, with just guitar and vocals.

It’s these kinds of releases – the kind where thought, craft and musical ability are allowed to be and breathe – that I can sink my teeth into.  Four songs is a very good place to start.  And Brandon Cunningham has done a very, very good job with Giveout.


Giveout is available now




About the Author

Rob Ross

Rob Ross has been, for good, bad or indifferent, involved in the music industry for over 30 years - first as guitarist/singer/songwriter with The Punch Line, then as freelance journalist, producer and manager to working for independent and major record labels. He resides in Staten Island, New York with his wife and cats; he works out a lot, reads voraciously, loves Big Star and his orange Gretsch. Doesn't that make him neat?

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