Jonny Burke 'Distance and Fortune' Self-Release

This compelling slice of roots rock has been put together by Burke and producer Marc Ford, who also worked with Ryan Bingham. Jonny Burke was formally a member of Austin based band The Dedringers but has decided to follow his own muse here. Distance and Fortune as a title relates to his travels and the things that happened to him on those ventures. The opening song Broke Again fairly tears it up with Burke and Ford on electric guitars and the solid rhythm section of Ronnie Johnson and Kory Cook pushing them along. Most of these songs deal with being on or off the road, they deal with movement both internal and external. Into The Autumn takes us through three states in a search for some kind of salvation. Fortune is tested on You Wear It So Well where "there was powders on the table, and police at the door". A song that looks at two people moving apart to different destinies. Things get more reflective on Little Girl Of The World before we go full tilt again on Cracka' Jack, a tale of takin' it to the edge. Fortune or rather misfortune is again the subject of Don't Let Me Fall wherein poet's and painters whose work never really makes it to the attention of the public fosters a sense of sadness on a low-key track that highlights Burke's nasal inflected life-worn voice. Quinceanera takes us into the heart of a Mexican family's mixed emotions. The album's lone cover of The Soft Boys Human Music perhaps sums up the approach to the music delivered here. But it is human music with a lower case "h" and it contemplates the frailties that are the trait of most of us. The album closes on the voice and guitar delivered song that acknowledges just how hard we can be on ourselves and how life can takes its toll but that hope does spring eternal despite the songs consideration of a "long steady decline". Jonny Burke has made an album that would likely appeal to Ryan Bingham fans with its rough scrabble roots-rock energy and moments of quieter contemplation that mark him out for good things to come and a solid debut solo offering.