This Is Your Life


aec.cdb5637241342.2 5/24/05 New

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    This Is Your Life Denny Carleton

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Review Text Very few rock musicians have had as long a career as Denny Carleton has by making music so simultaneously accessible and uncommercial. Though his melodies are catchy and his reedy vocals engaging, his songs are nonetheless too quirky and homespun to truly enter the mainstream. Artistically (if not financially), those are attributes rather than drawbacks, and This Is Your Life -- another in a long line of self-released efforts -- finds his talents undimmed in his mid-'50s. Shades of pop, folk, and even traces of Irish and Celtic music find their way into his brand of rock, straightforward and earnest yet packed with witticisms and eccentricities. Wacky references to popular culture, whimsical nostalgia, and a generally amused joy in the ups and downs of everyday life abound. Carleton also has fun both paying homage to and subverting aspects of his musical heritage. He uses many of the lyrics of Buddy Holly's "Words of Love" in the track of the same name on this disc, for instance, but matching them to an entirely different melody, he changes it to something entirely more contemplative, adult, and melancholic. The record sounds more mundane on paper, perhaps, than it really is; it's a low-key pleasure to be enjoyed by those who like heartfelt music that doesn't feel like it needs to be overtly weird, harsh, or dissonant to be independent of popular trends. The one substantial criticism that could be levied is that the production is sometimes thin and not of the highest standard, though it could also be argued that this lo-fi lack of pretense (with Carleton often playing and singing everything himself) suits the artist's auteurist aesthetic. ~ Richie Unterberger

Track Listing

CD: 1

  1. 1. This Is Your Life - 5:38
  2. 2. All I Wanted Was to Love You - 4:26
  3. 3. Six in the Morning - 4:37
  4. 4. Environmental Girlfriend - 3:33
  5. 5. Four Feet Good Two Feet Bad - 2:29
  6. 6. Words of Love - 5:50
  7. 7. Another Day in Paradise - 4:03
  8. 8. Department Store - 2:14
  9. 9. Telephone - 3:25
  10. 10. Easy Access - 3:42
  11. 11. Stacy on TV - 3:08
  12. 12. In the Jungle - 3:29
  13. 13. Beutifal Spring - 4:24
  14. 14. Peace - 3:07
  15. 15. Over the Hill to the Poor House - 3:02
  16. 16. Hold On - 3:08
  17. 17. In Times Such as These - 3:13
  18. 18. Me and You - 3:50

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