Smith & Brewer announce their first studio album

Smith & Brewer

Smith & Brewer release their debut studio album on November 1st.

Recorded over the course of a week in early 2018, using a makeshift studio we put together in our friends’ barn, this album is the culmination of the last few years writing and playing together. We wanted to record our best songs, in the way we felt would suit them best – with great musicians playing together in a great sounding room.

Another Shade Of Smith & Brewer ranges from the acoustic duo sound that we’re best known for, through to a full acoustic and electric band. We recruited our old friends Eric Lavansch on drums and Tom Sinnett on bass for our rhythm section, and we all had a lot of fun. Every morning after breakfast we’d make coffee, walk in to the barn, light the fire, and play music together.

It was a wonderful way to record, and we hope you enjoy listening to it as much as we enjoyed playing and producing it.

We are currently looking for bookings for 2020, and in addition to playing our own shows to promote the album, we will be touring in early 2020 supporting Fairport Convention on their winter U.K. tour.

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Artist’s website –

‘Life’s Too Short’ – live:

SMITH AND BREWER – Live 16/12/2017 (Own Label)

Smith And Brewer LiveRiding high on their success in front of their biggest audience to date at Cropredy, as well as playing a host of other festivals, Americana duo Smith & Brewer are having a good year. For everyone who’s been enjoying their performances, Live 16/12/2017 provides a chance to take the magic home and skitch the coat-tails of summer a little longer.

Even though this soft-launch album is not the band’s main-feature release this year, it’s worthy of an honourable mention. Recorded before a live audience on a wintry December night in The Plough pub in Shepreth, near Cambridge, the album gives a solid representation of the duo’s live set and sound, with a crisp, clear audio quality that keeps the tight harmony vocals and guitars in sharp focus.

Four songs will already be familiar from their Ben Smith & Jimmy Brewer EP, including a slightly more leisurely version of the delicious ‘Blow Wind Blow’, the uplifting ‘Isabella’ and intense ‘Beaten Track’.

Smith & Brewer seem to specialise in writing songs where a light touch in melody, harmonies and guitars counterpoints something far bleaker in the subject. The sunny, chilled vibes of ‘A Lovely Day For Doing Nothing’ hide a heart of darkness, “lately all my food’s delivered, in little boxes I forget to throw away”, and the bright guitars of ‘A Better Man’ belie self-doubt, “I have always thought you deserved a better man”.

Love, in all its aspects, is very often the subject matter, and on ‘Better Than Your Father’, Smith’s beautiful hymn to his son, it’s a pragmatic wish-list, “may you not pick up bad habits, I’ll try not to give you mine”. Yet even as the chirpy country of ‘Life’s Too Short’ coldly throws out “if she wants to leave you for somebody new, then let her”, it also features some gorgeously warm intricate picking. Along with the insistent, rolling blues of ‘Julietta’ with its frenetic guitar interplay there’s no doubting just how seriously good Smith & Brewer are and how compactly they work together.

Live 16/12/2017 certainly captures the Smith & Brewer sound and, despite the slightly disorientating “Happy Christmas” sign-off (give it a few months, it’ll be relevant again), it will help keep summer in mind until they drop their full studio album, due later in the year.

Su O’Brien

Artist website:

‘Life’s Too Short’ – live at Cropredy: