Jeffrey Foucault,
Miles From the Lightning
(Acoustic Roots, 2002)

It takes courage to produce a debut album. It takes more courage to fill it with 15 original songs. It takes further courage to use a minimalist approach to your musical accompaniment. Thank God Jeffrey had that courage because this album works!

The songs are extremely well written and expertly performed. His performance actually belies his young age (26) and promises great things for the future. He cites many influences, from Bob Dylan on "Highway 61 Revisited" to John Prine and very obviously Townes Van Zandt, as he dedicates the title track to him.

I loved all the tracks but if I were to pick just two for special mention they would be "Battle Hymn (of a college dropout farmhand)" and "Thistledown Tears." The track titles alone show both the emotion and the humour of this writer. In fact, a simple track listing would inspire anyone with a love of language to check out this album.

Think of tracks called "Highway and the Moon," "Sunrise in the Rearview" and "Street Light Halos" and you will just have to find out where such names lead. I promise you they lead to the motherlode.

One small criticism I have is that he does not provide the lyrics in the insert. Shame on you -- after writing such words, not to allow us to savour them!

- Rambles
written by Nicky Rossiter
published 3 April 2004

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