Sunday, 14 July 2013

Marco Argiro - Love

Album review by

The origin of the word "love" stems from a few places, one of these being the Sanskrit word "lubhyati" meaning "desires", and good old Latin "libet" which means "it is pleasing". And with now knowing these meanings it seems that Marco Argiro was pretty astute in calling his first solo album 'Love', for it sure encompasses those definitions and adds a few more as well. So after all that talk of "love" we are then treated to the opening and title-track 'Love'. It sidles up on a charming guitar before dropping into its swagger. A honky tonk piano embellishes the song with a classic rock 'n' roll feel, all the while Argio paraphrases The Beatles with "all you need is love", but delivered with an expert panache. 'Love' certainly is well versed in its classic rock roots, but also puts Argio alongside contemporaries such as Jesse Malin, Greg Dulli and Jeff Tweedy.

'In the Shade' is a subtler character. It shakes off the rock 'n' roll to give us a song that ebbs and flows with moments of restrained grace outlined by a swooned slide, then sweeps us up with a controlled drama. Close to an introspective Petty. Argio then gives us a tale of leaving for New York, a young man tells of the dreams, dramas and desires that this iconic city conjures. 'Leaving Behind (Brooklynville)' delivers this tale in a punchy, raw musical style as if epitomising the unique New Yorker attitude. After the stomp and attitude of 'Leaving…', fourth track 'Why Do We Fight' starts slowly, as if battling a hangover, then it wakes up both musically and lyrically. Argio perfectly places those thoughts we have had after a bitter fight, where "nothing feels like it should", it's a surprisingly powerfully emotive song. Like some lost 10CC ballad,'Darker Days to Come' is the fallout after the fight, where it is all falling apart. It has a mature sheen to it, but for such bitterness, maybe a sparser feel would of added to the sense of foreboding.

Lifting us out of this mire with a spiraling guitar and swagger reinstated. 'Two Ships Passing in the Night' is a exuberant song with a delicious vocal delivered like prime Soul Asylum or Urge Overkill. A highlight. Now it seems that Argrio has found his mojo. Stripped-back with another great vocal and a punch of perfectly placed "ohh-uhh"'s, 'The Actress' is another great song. We hear of passion, of life taking lovers apart. We hear of "wallowing", but the song is far from that; it's a song of longing wrapped in a wondrous coat. With slight Zepp echoes, 'So Long, Farewell' has a suitable epic grace; an expansive song, superbly crafted yet with a delicate touch. And so to 'Love''s end and 'Will You Remember Poison Heart'. It is an embittered title but the song is no bitter tirade, it tells of being alone, but with honesty rather than spite. Then it is given to us an a raucous manner. An ambitious song that takes you near '50s rock to modern stomp with a healthy dash of the Ramones 'Do You Remember Rock 'n' roll Radio'. With 'Love' we are taken on a ride of one man's travels into it, we hear the joy and heartache, but with it all we are given some fine songs, and also handful of outstanding ones.

Marco Argiro's website

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