- 20 Mar 20
Americana duo defy difficult second album rule
Don’t let the husband-and-wife tag put you off. The Remedy Club (basically Kieran McEvoy and Aileen Mythen) are at the far end of the spectrum from the tweeness of ‘Cinderella Rockafella’. Recorded in Nashville with a full-on band of award-winning musicians, “difficult” second albums have rarely sounded so effortlessly accomplished and so complete.
With compositional credits on the 10 tracks shared about equal, the Roots-inspired duo can sing each other’s lines with ease, so heart-stopping harmonies are a doddle for them. Their vocals sparkle with spontaneous vitality and there’s a welcome bite to McEvoy’s guitar playing, not least on the opening track as well as the soaring ‘Reclaim’ and the musically upbeat, and lyrically defiant, ‘I Survived’. There’s an air of exhilaration right from the start with ‘Sweet Symphony’, McEvoy’s electric guitar powering a strident country-rocker with aplomb, and ‘Fire and Gasoline’ could be Fleetwood Mac gone country, with Mythen’s unerring vocal a sheer delight. She does it again several times on the album, scoring top marks on the country-ballad ‘Seeing You Again’. Meanwhile, ‘I Got You’ borrows touches of Beautiful South and adds rich organ fills from Rory Hoffman.
True Hand True Heart is glued together by a satisfying array of original tunes that stretches from the beguiling gentle balladry of ‘Let The Good Times Roll’, outrageously good in every department, to the no-nonsense power of the snappy title track. In multiple Grammy-winning producer Ray Kennedy (Steve Earle, Emmylou Harris) they’ve clearly teamed with a kindred spirit. The Remedy Club might have been Ireland’s best-kept musical secret, but with its nutritious stew of Americana, Country, Roots and Rock, True Hand True Heart should put an end to all that. All in all, this is one album you could survive a lockdown with.
Out March 27.