Davie Furey is originally from Navan and now lives in County Laois but there isn’t a lot about his background to be found. On his new album, Haunted Streets, I hear hints of Andy White’s Belfast vocal inflections but I don’t know if that is in any way significant. He has a mighty cast of musicians in support, including Steve Wickham, and my first impression was of an Irish Bruce Springsteen.
The opening track, ‘Flames On The River’, is one of the album’s big production numbers and Davie calls it a song of revolution centering of events in the USA over the last few years. Haunted Streets was all but finished a year ago and we all know what happened then but the significance of the song hasn’t diminished. ‘Secret Light’ is another big song and then the mood changes with the piano-based ‘Farewell Returning Blues’ an old song reworked and one of the top tracks on the record as is ‘Just Like The Wind’, perhaps my favourite of all. Someone, and the cover is vague about who is doing what, is producing the sound of the wind – you can tell it’s an instrument but it sounds so real.
‘Who Am I’ opens with a gentle acoustic guitar but quickly builds up momentum while ‘Fire And Gold’, which follows it, starts with clanging electric guitar and doesn’t give up. Davie’s voice sits well over a big band but he equally well stands out as an acoustic performer and this record feels as though he’s flexing his musical muscles. There is a contrast between the soaring strings of ‘The Ghost In Me’ and the voice of the street trader that opens the upbeat rocker ‘Spaces Full’. It’s clearly a song about London and the city crowds but it could just be about having problems parking. ‘The Final Frontier’ is a pre-apocalyptic warning with an echoey backing that suggests the American west and lots of doomy sound effects.
‘The Magic Of The Ocean’ is Davie’s ecological song and the “bonus” track, ‘The Music Man’, finds him back on the acoustic guitar travelling the American south but the song is dedicated to his friend, Martin Walsh, who died while the record was being made. A fitting tribute to a supporter of artists and their music.
Artist’s website: www.daviefurey.com
‘Flames On The River’ – official video: