Ben Reel: Time To Get Real

~ Thursday, 1 October 2009
There is a well worn expression for this type of music. Music that neither delights or dismays. 'Middle of the road' describes this album perfectly. Ben Reel hails from Northern Ireland, but there is little evidence to hint to that here, as his inspiration is from America. Where fellow Irish songwriters like Bap Kennedy and Declan O'Rourke take this inspiration and craft into something original, Reel fails to inspire and this album fails to rise above mediocrity.

Some of the tracks here seem like a parody of country music. Like a time warp taking us back to the 70's when showbands were all the rage in Ireland. Time Just Slips Away is a prime example, the vocals more Johnny Cash than Johnny Cash. The generic country sound continues with Who Are You, Keep On Drivin and title track Time To Get Real. It is inoffensive stuff, but totally unoriginal and uninspired.

There are a few glimmers of hope in the country blues of Feel Alive and the chilled vibe of Raise Your Glass, but the production, as on the rest of the album, lacks any warmth. In this genre there are an abundance of artist that shine, Reel is not one of them.

[][ (1.5/5)

Review by Dylan Lennon