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Ten Silver Slide Trombones

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Album Review

Grace and beauty can be found in the simplest of things — a friend, a moment, a wish, a song. Such is the appeal of the Innocence Mission's five LPs, and such is the appeal of Innocence Mission guitarist Don Peris' solo debut. Ten Silver Slide Trombones marks his entry into the ranks of singer/songwriters and showcases what fans of his band know to be an unfairly overlooked talent. Whereas his earlier work frames Karen Peris' delicate voice within fully developed productions, Ten Silver Slide Trombones presents simple ideas in a simple context. Don Peris wrote, produced, and performed all 12 tracks (many of which include little more than vocals and guitar), and the results are rich and achingly beautiful. "Firefly," recorded with echoey ambience, is a peaceful moment spent watching the world out the back window. "Pennsylvania," sung in a shaky voice over an acoustic guitar, is a heartfelt invitation for a troubled friend to visit. "Anytime at All" and "Help Me Out" show with tasteful restraint — a rarity in musicians who openly acknowledge their religious beliefs — Peris' faith in a higher power. As a result, the occasional religious reference adds character and depth without being preachy. Obvious similarities in melody and sound exist between Ten Silver Slide Trombones and any of the Innocence Mission's releases (particularly Umbrella and Birds of My Neighborhood). A loose link can even be drawn to James Taylor or Cat Stevens in their heart-wrenching heydays. But Don Peris is a talent in his own right, worthy of praise for an inspiring solo debut.

Ten Silver Slide Trombones, Don Peris
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