Ditchbird - Real Enough for You Now
We all know those albums: like a warm compress firmly applied to your forehead, they soothe us when our lives become untenable. Whether the weather is unbearable or our personal lives are, it’s albums like Real Enough for You Now that offer the balm that 2021 is calling for. Vacillating between Scott Walker via The Ronettes on “With Anybody” or the beautiful crescendoing whisper of “Be Good to Yourself,” over the course of the album’s eleven tracks, one thing becomes clear: Ditchbird’s debut album showcases an artist bursting at the seams with years of talent ready to emerge.
The production resides in the warm confines of Americana’s softly reverbed palette, yet the songs never rest easily in the oft-creaky rocking chair of folk’s musical platitudes. It helps that this is the project of Tony Petersen, a guitarist for Social Animals (Rise Records), who has toured with the likes of Dashboard Confessional and All-American Rejects. Touring for years has offered him a unique insight into not only the plethora of genres to be exercised, but also the songwriting chops essential to carry a project across the finish line.
Upon being waylaid from touring due to the pandemic, Petersen finally sat down to review the myriad of songs he’d written, and he found that he’d “been sitting on some of these songs for a really long time”: “I had grown really comfortable with them and know them inside out.” At that point, having refined his playing through gigging and innumerable studio sessions, he also began asking himself “What genre do I want to lean into?”
Petersen is so adept as a musical talent that he can hop from the electronic flourishes of “Bright Side” to country-style licks on “Radio Silence” without forgoing absolute showstoppers like the stomping “Same Show Different Room,” or the star-gazing strut of the title track. And through each of these is the locomotive-like drawl of Petersen, a beautiful tenor whose dulcet tones take on an extraterrestrial quaver a la Marc Bolan at his most restrained.
Nowhere is this bewitching alchemy at play more than on the metronomic rocker “Be Good to Yourself,” a loving blend of heartland-rock and reverb-laden confessional. The song’s ripping lead is quickly displaced by echoing delay before the chorus beseeches the listener to “be good to yourself,” a message with warmth and necessity. Likewise, with the single “In it Together,” a paean to creativity, passion and love in tumultuous times. (Continue reading full bio on download page)