John Jenkins, Window Shopping In Nashville. Album Review.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10

Epics come and epics go, some will stand the test of time and others fall into the trap of becoming side-lined, browning with age, bleached in part by the weather streaming against the frames and forgotten, a dusty reminder of what they once stood for in the pantheon of music.

Epics in their own right, the length of the songs on offer, the time taken to put down the songs, the realisation on behalf of the listener that what they are hearing is not just a collection of songs, but instead weaved moments of introspective thought, actions and deeds. When placed over the time of a double album, the musician is able to delve further into their own psyche and what can come pouring out, isn’t just a narrative but more like the memory of what it was like to go Window Shopping In Nashville.

Some albums don’t have the epic tag readily to hand but as the listener goes through the tracks on offer, they cannot but help notice the place in which it will come to take in their collections and in the hearts. It could be suggested that John Jenkins has been working up to this moment in the last few years, a man to whom music has been a life-long pursuit, now finds that the musical high street, which was only open at certain times, has now every opportunity to see what has been adorned in every shop window.

It is always heartening to hear Mr. Jenkins present new music, surrounding himself with the very best of musicians available; in this new album’s case though he has excelled himself as Window Shopping In Nashville is more like an orchestra, a flavoured who’s who of the Liverpool scene. With contributions from Scott Poley, Chris Howard, Scott Whitley, Justin Johnson, Jake Woodruff, Amy Chalmers, Camilla Alice Sky, Vanessa Murray, Megan Louise, Ian Davies, Alan O’ Hare, Marc Melsander, Jon Lawton, Denis Parkinson, David Nixon, Stuart Todd and Etienne Girard, that shop window is expansive, ceremonial and full of the trappings of musical wealth.

Tracks such as the beautiful Silhouettes, Grounded in the Mire, The Unopened Letter, Louise, Too Much Drinking On A Sunday, Miss Red Shoes, So Far Away and It Hurts Too Much (When I’m With You) all find their way to the front of the window and gleam with the anchor of truth attached to them, covered in best buy signs and part of the epic that truly hits home and stays, never wavering, never fading.

A much loved Liverpool musician, John Jenkins has continually soared and surprised, in Window Shopping In Nashville the Americana and the local stir together and the at ease feel is passionate and full of the two genre’s appeal.

John Jenkins launches Window Shopping In Nashville on November 24th at Studio 2, Parr Street, Liverpool.

Ian D. Hall