Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Morgan Cameron Ross: "College & Bathurst" (EP review)

Albums about heartache and ruined relationships can grow tiresome.  That's why they are best done as EPs!

That's what Toronto's Morgan Cameron Ross has done with his new 5-song record, College & Bathurst.  The EP is a chronicle of the aftermath of his break-up with a supermodel (braggart), and is a collaboration with Pilot Speed singer Todd Clark.

With a title like College & Bathurst one assumes there will be reference to Sneaky Dee's, and there is on the opener "Let's Start All Over Again".  It's a blend of acoustic and orchestral rock that grows catchier and catchier as it progresses.

As with any good break-up record, you need a good kiss off song.  On College & Bathurst that song is "Giving Up On You", a simple folk-based number that puts an exclamation point on the relationship.

The arrangements have a tendency to go offside.  For example, there's a Postal Service-quality to "We Got It Good" that makes it sound a tad on the schlocky side.

Ross' greatest strength is his lyrics.  While most, okay nearly all, songwriters who try to wax poetic fails to connect on a personally emotional level.  That's not the case with Ross, as he has no difficultly making you appreciate both the emotion of his words and the beauty of his phrases.  It's those lyrics that help "Cannot Break a Broken Heart" overcome an incredibly ill-advised rap interlude.

Everything culminates on "Our Love", a hopeful-sounding closer that sees Ross joined by members of Stars, as well as Carleton Stone and Lights.

If you're going through a break-up, or about to dump someone, I suggest you use Morgan Cameron Ross as inspiration.

Best tracks: "Our Love", "Let's Start All Over Again"

Track listing for College & Bathurst:
  • Let's Start All Over Again
  • Giving Up On You
  • We Got It Good
  • Cannot Break a Broken Heart
  • Our Love

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