Nos Da Comrade (meaning ‘Good Night Comrade’ in Welsh) is the tenth album from UK singer songwriter Peter Bruntnell. Recorded and produced by Peter at his home studio in deepest Devon, and in the local village hall at Mortehoe, it features a mix of good songwriting and Bruntnell’s trademark heartfelt vocals.
The topical opener Mr Sunshine is about Donald Trump’s golf resort in Aberdeenshire, built with the cooperation of Alex Salmond, then First Minister of Scotland, and displaced a Scottish fishing community in the process. Musically this is something of an indie anthem with big hooks and a lovely melody that is beautifully at odds with the lyrics. The video for this one is well worth checking out too.
There is plenty of variety in an album where the pace rises and fall throughout. The closing love song Caroline is a beautiful soft ballad while the slow and sad End Of The World features smooth vocals and some very nice acoustic guitar work. The subject here is spending too much time in the virtual world and missing out on the real one. Dance Of The Dead is slow and atmospheric, a steady guitar joined by piano to create a lament for the lost. There’s something almost supernatural about the tone here.
Long Way From Home has regret aplenty, but mixed with nostalgia for lost youth. There is a soft tone and the higher vocal delivery emphasises the wistful feel of the lyrics very well. The starkness of the music works well, leaving the focus on Bruntnell’s words.
Of the more upbeat tracks, Yuri Gagarin stands out. Focusing on a young boy’s fascination with space travel, the strong bass line and fine guitar work create an almost other worldly feel before a fine solo takes over. Peak Operational Condition has more of a new wave sound, an eighties energy added to lyrics of loss and regret Rain Stars has a solid indie feel with passionate vocals and big guitars.
Peter Bruntnell has long been a fine songwriter and this collection of eleven new tracks stands up very well. Its mix of indie guitar songs and more reflective acoustic tracks gives it a good balance – and the quality doesn’t drop at all from start to finish.
Venue: Nos Da Comrade
Support Band: Domestico Records