The aversion some might feel toward stalwart Newfoundlanders Great Big Sea is complicated by a vague sense of nationalism. They’re as Canadian as it gets and unflappably proud of their regionalism, an admirable trait in a popular music landscape that frowns on emphasizing local culture.
If only they weren’t so steadfastly planted in the middle of the road. Recording with Hawksley Workman might be considered risk-taking, but he influences little to none of their tested formulas on Fortune’s Favour, their ninth CD. Workman isn’t about to tell Alan Doyle how to write songs; fair enough. But it’s all very safe and, in the end, Fortune will do little more than fuel endless tours where new songs are patiently tolerated as long as the band plays Ordinary Day.
GBS gets jiggy at Molson Amphitheatre Saturday (July 12).