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Jeremy Ivey

The Dream And The Dreamer – 2019 (Anti-)

Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh

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CDs by Jeremy Ivey

Jeremy Ivey is a master storyteller, and his songs oftentimes tell tales of those down on their luck, like the man in "Greyhound," who wants a ticket that takes him anywhere except back home to his loveless relationship. "Falling Man," though, is far more philosophical than linear, as it chronicles the oftentimes confusing world of post-moderns. "I'm out here where I don't belong," its narrator admits. The chorus speaks of a constantly falling man who is calling out for a little understanding. It ends with the words, "maybe one day you'll land." This desire for a safe landing is more a wish than a sure thing. The song drives home how Ivey, who is the guitarist for wife Margo Price's band, may sing over country/folk instrumentals, but he can also be especially existential, lyrically.

With its thumping acoustic guitar groove and harmonica fills, "Story Of A Fish" hearkens back to "Comes A Time" era Neil Young sonics. When he sings, "I'll be your river/You'll be my sea," he's once again wading into philosophical waters, though. He finishes with the title track, which is a piano ballad. Through it, Ivey personifies dreamers and dreams. Its lines about migrants coming to what would become America on the Mayflower, though, establishes a shift from being philosophically driven to being much more political. Lyrically, this song brings Young to mind once again. Ivey writes with metaphors in such a way that all points on the political spectrum can find themselves within it.

There isn't a whole lot of joy in Ivey's music. His songs are like a tearful observer's perspective on modern times. Music can be used as a means of escapism. With Ivey's songs, however, there's no escape from the cold, hard facts of life.