These songs, though at times almost unremittingly sad, demand to be heard. The opening title track is somewhat reminiscent of Tindersticks, all piano, deftly played electric guitar while Walsh croons his way through it. An almost Glen Campbell-like lush string part introduces Looking for Another Town, a slice of Go-Betweens on downers. Black Ribbons, a duet with Natasha Penot almost lets some sunshine in before the desperately sad Twenty One. Descending piano and guitar accompany Walsh's lament which is one of the songs which addresses the death of his son. It's not exploitative, instead it comes across as heartfelt and raw. You'll need to draw breath after listening to it.
The music here is exquisite, probably Walsh's strongest collection of songs. The brooding piano ballad The House That We Once Lived In is followed by September Skies and Please Don't Say Remember, intelligent indie-pop in a kind of 1980s way. But the saddest song is saved for last. Swap Places again addresses his son's death, Walsh expressing his desire to take the place of his son. He sings "where's the God in all of this?" over downbeat yet comforting music. It's lump-in-the-throat stuff.
A deep and immersive album with songs that burrow deep under the skin. Fine stuff indeed.