Benjamin Finney
“Warm Within These Walls” b/w “Cut Me Loose” [DL; Self-Released]

The factors which we root our own musical experiences are many and varied, causing ideological entanglements and thematic butting of heads for many of us. Me? If you’ve spent any time within these digital pages (and with all my being, much gratitude), you can see the many strands I follow. But I admit, as simplistic and vain as it may be, I always return to the organic sound of an acoustic guitar. Granted, I don’t want some coffee shop troubadour as my totem for these flights of fancy, but rather flights of steeled fancy along the lines of Fahey and Kottke.

Lo and behold, I am not alone in my appreciation for the style of American Primitive. But like most things born stateside, it’s often the forces outside the imaginary borders where it is often perfected. Benjamin Finney may not be as proficient or skilled as the elder statesmen of the genre, but his two latest songs are fantastic exercises in exploring a genre that has become mangled and manipulated (for many great purposes, mind you) in various genre-defining pursuits. Here, it’s as simple as one person in a room picking and accenting as the mood strikes. And as the titles of the tracks would hint, both affairs are upbeat and positive reflections, emoting a warmth that is sorely needed in a world growing ever colder thanks to upturned noses and shrugged shoulders. It’s nice to lay down some of the heavy burdens we all carry with two digital slices of classic Americana pie with tripping headlong into the terrible Baby Boomer pre-nostalgia for something that never was. This is very much real, and very much appreciated. Mr. Finney, keep the torch ablaze until such a time when we are all capable of proudly holding it high in a sky limitless in possibilities.

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