(Photo Credit - B. R. Leeson)
Advance Review - B. R. Leeson - Leaves of Wire (November 8, 2019)
I contacted B R Leeson yesterday and asked if I could write a review for his upcoming album, Leaves of Wire. He responded by telling me he was grateful for my support. It made me smile, because I knew he would say something like that. Although he is an extremely talented musician, it is his humble side that takes him to the next level.
After listening to Leaves Of Wire a couple of times, I thought about approaching this review as if the album was constructed to help us get through the autumn and winter months. I was going to write, “Seasonal” is that perfect end-of-the-summer we-are-excited-about-fall song. And “Getting Older,” my favorite from the album, is Indian Summer. The songs that follow push us closer to the winter months with “Brother” being the first real hard freeze, “Quiet Down” the heart of winter, and “7000” the hope for spring and summer. However, I changed my mind. I want to give B R Leeson the review he deserves, something personal because his voice is like hearing a good friend you haven’t seen in a while.
I have to admit, I am very partial. I met B R Leeson years ago while working Monday Night Open Stages at Jackie O’s. He came in with a couple of friends. I was busy and could not pay close attention but I remember that they played a Radiohead song. (I wish I could remember which one it was, but I know it was not “Creep.”) B R Leeson became a regular performer, sometimes with friends but sometimes solo. Other musicians began talking about how he had something different—layers, the personality, the look—something that made him stand out. Over the years, I’ve seen less of him as he branched out, played many other venues, and moved to Columbus with his wife. Leaves of Wire is the perfect opportunity for someone like me to experience the beautiful nature of B R Leeson.
In my review notes, I wrote things like quiet, slow, nostalgic, sentimental, sad, lovers, perfection, pairing for the winter, dreaming, lying together under the blankets and a mixture of excitement, reflection, sadness, and longing. When I needed an album that made me feel the sweet hurt of being alive, the perfection of crumbling moments, and the bonds that are created because of these complications, Leaves Of Wire came into my life. It emulates the upcoming seasons, shows us the possibilities and reassures us that will we make it out ok.
Thank you, B R Leeson.
Final Thought: Because of its timing, I called Flying Lotus’s Flamagra the summer album of 2019. B R Leeson is also choosing the perfect time to release his new album. The lyrics and guitar work of songs like “637” and “Getting Older” leave the heart full and set the perfect atmosphere for sitting next to a cool weather campfire in boots, jeans, and a hoodie holding hands with your lover.
Rating - 5/5 (I am partial, but this album truly moved me.)