When an artist tries to capture a certain aesthetic or vibe of another era, the end product can sometimes be too precious, maybe even a touch contrived. In an effort to honour his most glaring influence, Woody Guthrie, North Dakota-raised Tom Brosseau has made an album so creaky and delicate, it sounds like it was time-capsuled in 1936. In fact, you feel like you should spin it on a gramophone instead of your digital music player.
By using a one-mic studio set-up, his guitar-plucking is politely muffled under crackly-radio, Americana folk vocals, resulting in a uniformly fragile sound that would be more effective if a few lively numbers were sprinkled in. But 10 straight plaintive pieces about old books, girls named Peggy and odes to the sea are nostalgia overload.
Brosseau plays the Opera House Friday (November 2).