There is a new album out from charming singer/songwriter Bobby Jo Valentine. I knew it was coming, but didn't realize it would be this soon. I have been a fan since I started listening, instantly being drawn into his silky combination of Folk, Pop and Rock I consume like cotton candy, just melting over my palate. And the latest, 'Home,' does nothing to deter that from continuing. The album kicks off with the quiet and reflective tone of "Real Love", a bold look at life and love, the nature of both which escape us at particular times in our lives. The subtle opening soon gives way to a strong chorus, alternating in a give and take with the contemplative. There is an earnest sweetness that borders on sexy in "Come Back To Bed." What starts as a sweet coo in my ear grows to a bold declaration. I like that . That is soon replaced with the familiar chords of "A Hand To Hold," one of my favorite tracks off the 'By My Side' EP. Listen for yourself.
By the time the first few bars and the first set of finger snaps were done, I was captivated by "Warm Is The Light." I don't know how Bobby Jo combines it all to make his light pleading be so sweet, but job accomplished. With "Home," Bobby Jo discusses when the balance between being on the road away from home is not well balanced. "Between Those Lines " is a lovely song sung as a duet with Amy Hogan.
The soft Country feel to that duet is replaced with a driving beat more Pop/Rock in feel when Bobby Jo ignites the "Spark." He works hard to get that done, rekindling an old romance. I am happy he also revisited "By My Side," the title cut from the earlier EP. This one is more Pop driven, but still able to touch the same spot in my heart. Soon "Gunshot" fires off, popping with a fresh sound.
Soon, we hear the familiar "Chase Away The Dark" given a new, Pop-driven sound, a step away from the acoustic sound found on the EP. I do love this song, and each new take seems to reveal some new nuance, a deeper meaning. That is followed by "Vernal Falls," referring to a water attraction in Yosemite Park. This is a slightly haunted, but still a love-filled ballad that grows bigger and stronger with each listen. "Til The Clock Strikes Forever" opens with strains of the ukulele, giving the first half of the song a lazy feel that quickly moves in a different direction. lending added pleasure. The album closes with "Save What You Can," another favorite that instantly registered with me. Listen for yourself.
If I was a bit smitten with Bobby Jo before, it has become a full-grown crush now. There is just so much charm to the songs, with such honesty in his voice. I swear the songs grow deeper the more you linger, the more you hit repeat. For more about Bobby Jo Valentine, visit his official website. 'Home' can be purchased on iTunes and Amazon.