Stereo Embers EXCLUSIVE ALBUM PREMIER – Chris Robley’s “The Great Make Believer”

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Couple weeks back SEM brought you a first listen to Chris Robley’s then-upcoming album track “Evangeline,” which your humble correspondent said was “(F)ull of a wounded hope and rich with an incipient acoustic pop sense,” [that] imbues the deeply-lived poignant with a still-hopeful optimism.” Well, that album, The Great Make Believer, is now available (self-released and available here) and besides being even happier to bring you its first airing in the public sphere, we feel compelled to mention that the above description more than aptly covers the album entire, though we’d be remiss to leave unsaid the nods to Ray Davies, to 70’s acoustic pop, to the sprightly backporch spirit of americana, to tracks that suggest Matthew Ryan accompanied by Sneaky Pete Kleinow and any other number of slyly suggestive tropes and influences that in the end all add up to the unmistakable impression of a guy who’s found his voice and has placed inside a sound that’s defined by easy, expert playing, confident arrangements, and a performance that’s almost overwhelmingly natural. If the intention was to rep the rich brocaded fabric of the singer-songwriter genre as it’s evolved over the decades in this country, well then, job well done. This is what they mean when they say ‘Good stuff.’