By David Viner
You've probably already got records in your collection that sound like this one, the thing is, you probably stole those records from your dad. Your dad won't have heard of David Viner, because he's young and has accidentally become one of the credible musicians around. By rights this man should be an American in his 50's, having released this record in 1970, but he isn't. He's English, in his 20's and he's released this record now.
David Viner was last seen in Leeds in May supporting the Soledad Brothers. All who met him hailed him as a thoroughly nice chap. It is a sad fact today that talent alone doesn't equal recognition, however a gaggle of celebrity friends does, fortunately David Viner has both. Therefore David has since appeared in the NME several times, largely due to his connections within the Detroit music scene, in particular his friendship with Jack White (David can be seen in the background of 'that' swimming trunks picture in the NME recently).
This album isn't ground-breakingly original. It's heavily rooted in blues tradition and is held up by one incredibly important factor- good, old-fashioned talent and ability. Viner's guitar playing is outstanding, he creates intricate melodies to counterpoint his bluesman vocals, and plays with impressive flair and style on all three of the instrumental tracks on offer here. The standout track on Mr. David Viner is opener 'Nobody's Fault', which is strongly reminiscent of Nick Drake, with Paul Simon-esque guitar. Viner's vocal style changes throughout the album, from sounding strangely like Eric Clapton on 'Don't Do That' to a young Bob Dylan on 'Sally Jay'.
Viner's basic, clean approach to music is fantastically refreshing, especially after the current tidal wave of innumerable garage bands and retro, transatlantic electronica. All that matters on this album is one man, his guitar, and the blues.
It's reasonable to assume that David Viner won't be troubling cd:uk any time soon, but this records sheer quality should ensure that he won't be short of admiring fans and friends, celebrity or otherwise, for a while yet.