The Quiet American - Volume Two Self-Release

Despite the title this is the first album from Aaron Keim, a folk singer, musician and songwriter. He is joined on a number of tracks by Nicole Keim, with whom he made a previous (duo) album Born in the Country, Raised in Town. Keim is another young musician enthralled by the music of an earlier time. The mix here is of original songs like I Will Be The One, Talk Is Cheap and Break The Hold and a set of traditional tunes that includes KC Jones, Wandering Boy, When Death Come (Creepin' In The Room) and Black Jack Daisy. The accompaniment is sparse but effective, Keim proving adept at banjo, acoustic guitar, banjo and other instruments. However the key instrument here is Keim's resonant voice, one that gives these songs their individual presence. He is joined on a number of the songs the sweet harmony of Nicole Keim. On other tracks feature additional instruments but it is largely Keim on his own. on Talk Is Cheap he plays ukulele, electric guitar, bass, percussion and lap steel. On the instrumental Spanish Fandango he plays some dexterous ukulele. This American may not be a noisy one but he knows his way round the selling of a tune. His own songs fit easily beside the traditional tunes handed down through the ages and while they may not become the traditional songs of the future, or indeed cover topics as dark, that may be more to do with the way music is now dispensed rather than with the overall quality of the material. He also is of the here and now and filters these songs through the experiences and musical influences that reflect the age he lives in and shows why many traditional songs still have a relevance to the world as it is today when delivered with a certain energy.