Jorge Luis Borges once recalled his father giving him this advice: "Read a lot, write a lot, don't rush into print." For musicians, the corollary to these three prudent injunctions would be "Listen a lot, play a lot, don't rush into the studio."
Lucky Boyd, a leading light of the Galveston singer/songwriter scene, has heeded only the first two of those instructions. His debut Let's Go features ten songs of laid-back Gulf Coast country-rock with a blue-collar outlook, most of which are professionally written and sung. However, Boyd's uneven offering can't quite scramble out of the valleys (tinny drum machines on some tracks) of a shoestring production budget.
There's also too much filler. Strong, relatively polished numbers like the rave-up title track and "Whatever Comes to Mind" are sandwiched around an acoustic 12-bar blues which uses the word "kinda" no fewer than three times. Call me a purist, but the word (or is it words?) "kinda" has no business in the devil's music. Ain't nothin' "kinda" about the blues.
That said, the lion-maned La Marquian sings warmly and assuredly, and crafts pleasant melodies. At his best, Boyd's work can stand proud alongside that of Richard Dobson and the Shake Russell-Dana Cooper duo. "My Baby's in El Paso," a stomping trucker anthem, and by far the most fully conceived cut on the CD, finds Boyd in a full-band setting. When Boyd can release a full album of songs of this caliber it will be time to sit up and take notice. That he can is a matter of when, not if. Unfortunately, however, too much of Let's Go has the feel of a demo, albeit a promising one.
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