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darrin james acoustic

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The best kept secret in music


"Time Out NY"

Brooklyn singer-songwriter Darrin James touches on Robbie Robertson's gruff soulfulness, Tom Waits' vaudevillian menace and Paul Westerberg's ramshackle charm. His bluesy rockers carry perceptive lyrics and memorable tunes; his crack band supplies the laid-back grooves.
- November 2007

"Blog Critics Magazine"

Darrin James distills hard-edged soul and craggy Americana into a redolent tincture that I've come to think of as New York City Melting Pot ...Its literate lyrics and subject matter are a big part of why Thrones of Gold stands as one of the best indie productions of the year."
by Jon Sobel - May 2007

"Pace University Press"

Born to sing the blues, Darrin James tears at the soul...There's an uncanny, effortless authenticity to it that is aloof and genius at the same time. The Brooklyn-based musician has a certain weary, detached air about him, as if he barely realizes the scope of his words and music while executing them in untroubled fluency. Despite such ease in his music, every song is tinged with raw emotion...undeniable talent and originality." - Julyssa Lopez
- April 2007

"Dissolver Magazine"

Thrones of Gold, the debut from the Darrin James Band, is a strong disk the whole way through, incorporating an inspiring variety of musical styles and lyrical themes...With a rugged voice and virtuoso guitar skills, James and his band make the most of his well-written songs." - April 2007

"Americana UK"

An intriguing debut for his own record label...

Residing in Brooklyn NY, where James and his wife settled following their year long honeymoon travelling the world, he's bought back lots of influences from his travels. Bit of a worry though having a song on his album entitled 'Hate That Word' which is an indictment about love. Wonder what his wife thinks?

Initial listens to this album indicated a blues leaning. His voice is gruff and rough and suited to the delta blues or jazz but this cd is far more than that. Whilst 'Had Enough Of Me' and 'Crazy World' demonstrates his fondness for Tom Waits and some tracks include Colin Stetson on tenor sax (who's played with Waits), this isn't 'Heart Attack and Vine' revisited.

Opener 'Trivial' kicks the album off in Springsteen style. With its rousing chorus and loud guitar continually punching its way through. Followed by some funky organ on 'Duct Tape' it expands the expectation of what this album is all about. The title song brings in some bluegrass that harks back to 'O Brother Where Art Thou'? Three songs in and we've experienced a raft of styles already. 'Faith On The Run' supplies a catchy country rock tune that's got hit written all over it.

But the best track here is 'Herie' which James wrote back in 2000. About a friend who fought in the Iran war, and the hatred that took over him after his family was murdered in front of his eyes, it outlines the narrator's concerns that he won't be able to love again, and will continue to keep hatred closer to him.

Penultimate song 'In The End' brings in masses of guitar solo's as James describes walking the desolate streets of Lafayette as he struggles with where he'll end up at the end of his life, "Some say heaven, some say hell, I believe the latter, would suit me just as well". Not a positive song.

But the final entry in this musical diary 'Lucky man' gives him the realisation he's looking for. "I'm a lucky man, I sink my toes in the sand. I'm lost in a foreign land, so I'm lucky that I got you. I hope you feel lucky too". Sounds like a love song to his wife to me. Maybe it was inspired by his honeymoon. "We share a language and a destination. We share a ticket and an invitation".

He's only joking about his views of love I reckon. He knows what side his bread is buttered.
- June 2007

"Smother Magazine"

Sort of a mix between Springsteen and Neil Young, they're a rock format that's highly engaging and completely exhilarating. Vocally it's throaty and raw but manages to convey a perfect sense of melody. Highly enjoyable and I would most certainly recommend it. - April 2007

"Deli Magazine"

The man's got Joe Henry versatility, a crackerjack studio band, and a great sense of craft... from a Lovett/Waits blues into a John Prine diatribe then rocketing off with an Elvis Costello pop gem. The record was made with a lineup featuring seriously tasty musicians making notable decisions that allow Darrin’s throaty vocals to take the foreground. It’s got it all. So much so that Darrin literally counts his blessings in the upbeat list poem love song "Lucky Man". A very musical effort." - Review by Walt Wells - September 2007


Still working on that hot first release.



Currently at a loss for words...