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5.0 out of 5 stars Songsmithery at its best, 22 May 2010
This review is from: North Star (Audio CD)
Ever since I heard Killermont Street as a kid I had a soft spot for Aztec Camera and Roddy Frame. Some of their stuff was overproduced for me but anyone could see he could write a tune. This album is proof of that. I first saw Roddy preview one of the songs on here 'Bigger, Brighter, Better' on some BBC TV show (Songwriters circle?) in the early noughties when he appeared with Neil Finn. The more acoustic, natural feel to this song runs through most of the CD and he wears it well.

Back to the One is a cracking uplifting opening and Here comes the Ocean has a middle 8 to die for. River of Brightness and Reason For Living touch greatness at times. They are deep, powerful and poignant songs about what it means to build a life upon love and how vital it is to not lose sight of the purity of the good things around and within us. Autumn Flower is as delicate and fragile as it sounds, musically intricate but never short of beautiful.

It's Bigger Brighter Better I keep coming back to though. It's a sad, reflective and knowing tale that acknowledges the all too real prospect of how things fall apart, despite the high ideals and the promise. Roddy takes us from the sparky early skirmishes of a relationship to the self-loathing, humiliation and ultimate failure; then finally to the graceful acceptance of defeat. And with that acceptance he finds a kind of redemption "lover, leave me and bring the world back to me...Bigger, brighter, better for your own sweet self".

Roddy deserves to be heard. The good soul that told the tale, at the end of the 80s, of youngsters having to leave their families to travel south for work from Killernmomt Street is alive and well.
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North Star
North Star by Roddy Frame (Audio CD - 1998)
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