Carl Broemel: All Birds Say

Carl Broemel: All Birds Say
My Morning Jacket multi-instrumentalist sideman, Carl Broemel steps into the spotlight with his solo debut, All Birds Say. But those expecting My Morning Jacket with a different vocalist will be sorely disappointed, because Broemel has his own sound.
Broemel is a classically trained guitarist and plays pedal steel guitar, saxophone and sings back-up in My Morning Jacket so it should be unsurprising that the musicianship exhibited on All Birds Say is superb. “In the Garden” features majestic steel guitar backed by light finger-plucked acoustic guitar while saxophone and bassoon pepper the lazy summer chorus. It is, however, Broemel’s lush-yet-unsure sounding vocals that really star on the song and ultimately on the album.
On the album’s closing song “Retire”, Broemel ends the album by singing the word “retire” over and over again. With jazzy drums and an oboe backing, Broemel’s vocals sound an equal amount of pained and serene as if the word retire could mean death, sleep, or simply quitting. Which he actually means, I am not sure but his vocal intonation allows the listener to indulge any of the three meanings equally.
Overall, I often find myself on the cynical side of listening to softer, slower releases but All Birds Say fares pretty well in my eyes. Although the album could easily be slid in as background music for any day sitting on the front porch, sipping lemonade from a jar, the album also holds up to a more refined close listen.
Rating: 7.6/10
MP3: Carl Broemel “Retire”
Buy: iTunes or Insound!