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Soul singer Martin Sexton releases his best work yet, the highly anticipated seventh record, Seeds. The troubadour says no thanks to several label offers and remains fiercely independent on his own. This album ranges like an American road-trip with stops in the regions of gospel, country and western, and rock, crafted with keen pop sensibility. The New York Times says, "His unpretentious heartiness helps him focus on every soul singer's goal: to amplify the sound of the ordinary heart." Seeds oozes with that soul ... infused with spiritual hunger and child-like joy, all delivered with Sexton's fervent vocals. Sexton's raucous rendition of the late Billy Preston's "Will It Go Round In Circles" rocks with fuzz bass and Leslie vocal shimmer. Sexton, along with Crit Harmon, combines traditional rhythm sections - with anything from minnow buckets and whiskey jugs to a guitar as drum kit - to frame the tracks with unique, timeless production. Digipak.
Flaunting the playful, bluesy voice that has kept him popular for almost two decades, folkie extraordinaire Martin Sexton returns on Seeds, his first new set of songs in seven years (not counting 2005's holiday-themed Camp Holiday). Of course, for a renowned road warrior like Sexton recorded work isn't really the point, as this release like all the others is just more fodder for his famously blistering live sets (memorably captured on 2000's Live Wide Open). Still, it's a welcome dose of the man's music--a mix of broadly appealing jams, Van Morrison-esque drama and Sexton's earthy pipes, reminiscent of R&B greats like Otis Redding. "Happy" opens it up with a cheery, gospel-tinged vibe, riding easygoing organs and guitars straight into the equally summery "Thought I Knew Ya." Later, an electrified vocal track plugs a charge into the hop-a-long tune "Marry Me" while guest Nils Lofgren's juke joint guitar vibe livens up "How Far I've Come." Sexton can get a little corny with his lyrics ("Wild Angels" contains a few samples), but as a musician his overt earnestness is the secret to his success. It's not always subtle but the guy has an absolute knack for classic roots music. With the energy of a true believer, Sexton manages to infuse a timeless appeal into every track. --Matthew Cooke
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I remember seeing Martin live and hearing "Failure" prior to the new album and have to say it is one of my favorite tracks right along with the ballad "Still Think about You" which are both stand outs on this new album for me. "Keep It Simple" took a little time growing on me but as with some of Martin's other songs, it takes some time to fully enjoy them until you have had a chance to absorb all the sounds and songs created by this clever and creatively unique performing artist!
Thanks for a great CD!! Martin Sexton's SEEDS is a must own for EVERYONE!
So plant some SEEDS in your soul today!!
I don't know if he'll ever again hit the lyric highs he hit on Black Sheep and In the Journey. But this is vintage MS, the reason I buy all his records without hearing them (been a little bit disappointed a couple of times -- but I still own them and they do grow on me.) No disappointments this time.
Not in the league of The American and Black Sheep, but much better than his freshman efforts on "In the Journey". I saw him in Seattle just a few weeks after the release, and his band is fun and musical. Hardcore Sexton fans might whine that Martin has lost his edge, but I like to think that he has just found his groove and mellowed on this album.
Still, the rumored album of Martin covering famous tunes would be incredible. Until then, we have this great effort.
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"Seeds" sows some joy along with the music.Read more
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