The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011


A Review of the album 'Legacy of Hospitality' by Dan Sartain

Review Snapshot: The perfect starter kit for Sartain virgins, this long album may be a lot to digest but it is the perfect showcase for the singer/songwriter's diversity.

The Cluas Verdict? 7/10

Full Review: Dan Sartain is anAmerican rock singer/songwriter from Birmingham, Alabama and while he has not achieved the heights of fame that he may have been originally been aiming for, he has proven to be a talented and lucky man in the music world. Since 2001 he has released six studio albums, the most recent being Legacy of Hospitality.  

The album is being presented by camp Sartain as a companion to previous album Dan Sartain Lives and even something of a document of the musician’s career: it containing tracks that succeed even his early self-produced titles as well as alternative versions of songs from his previous offerings. 

On listening to the current LP, it is clear to see that Sartain takes his influences from a variety of genres as it is a plethora of styles and eras mashed into one 21 song album. While at times tedious, overall the album contains many hidden treasures. It is impossible not to compare some of the songs to their sound-a-likes. Atheist Funeral is without doubt one of the strongest songs on the album, and it bares resemblance to Liverpool indie rockers The Coral, right down to the drudging bass-line and the harmonious backing vocals.

Another impressive song is the fast-paced Those Thoughts which highlights the singer/songwriter's ability to capture the listener's attention with compelling lyrics and train-like beats. The mood quickly changes from sober adolescence to a bluesy feel that can only be accomplished through life experience with Box Cutter In My Boot, another impressive track. 

As can be expected however, there are some weak links in the otherwise delightful album such as the flight of the flinch. To be blunt, it sounds as though it should be on the soundtrack from a recent Nicolas Cage movie, and that is by no means a positive air to exude. Other downfalls include Day-By-Day, a weak effort that apes some of the better songs on the album. Then there is the cheesy Besame Mucho, which is reminiscent of a song you would find some sun burnt Irish man singing in a classless bar in Costa Del Sol. 

Overall the album is worth the listen, there are some dreary moments that you will feel inclined to skip over but they can be forgiven as it would be a hard task to produce a faultless 21 track album. If you have not already listened to Dan Sartain's work, this would be a good place to start. 

 Claire Kane

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Nuggets from our archive

2001 - Early career profile of Damien Rice, written by Sinead Ward. This insightful profile was written before Damien broke internationally with the release of his debut album 'O'. This profile continues to attract hundreds of visits every month, it being linked to from Damien Rice's Wikipedia page.