Album Review of

Written by Joe Ross
February 7, 2021 - 12:03am EST
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Faced with a difficult year, French musician Amaury Faivre sequestered himself in his studio and revisited his Delta blues musical roots. His third album 2020 is a solo project on which he offers various acoustic instruments, vocals and percussion on eleven self-penned songs. Using lowered tunings on his guitar, as well as some flavorings of banjo and mandolin, he captures an early acoustic blues sound with folk and ragtime influences. Opening with an instrumental “Amuse-bouche,” we know we’re in for a treat of solid, soulful music. The harmonica was Faivre’s first instrument, and he features it prominently on every track of 2020. The story of a young man messing with the “Wrong Girl” leads to twenty years of walking, working and struggling.

Faivre is a talented multi-instrumentalist, and his fingerpicked acoustic and resophonic guitars provide driving melody for songs like “Sister” and “Kinda Girl” and “Heart of Stone.” He occasionally uses a stomp box for some gently understated, tasty rhythm support. On some songs, he multi-tracks harmonica into each side of the mix to give the music an accordion-like effect. He also multi-tracks his vocal harmony into choruses for “Mary Mae” and “Even More.” A cameo appearance by young Marius Faivre (presumably his child) is heard in the back-up vocals of “Pouring Rain” as Amaury sings about playing outside with his kid. This is an album with a lot of personality and spirit. While Amaury Faivre has toured and recorded with an electric group and acoustic duo, this solo project allows him to showcase his many instrumental talents, reflective songwriting, engineering and production skills. With a rootsy folk-blues style full of evocative music and poignant statements, this impressive album was time well spent during the 2020 pandemic. (Joe Ross, Roots Music Report)