Dale Murray, Dream Mountain Dream
Alt-country group Cuff The Duke had been Dale Murray’s main source of artistic output since 2003 and he definitely had a major influence on that band’s polished, timeless sound. On the side he was also an accomplished session player and producer helping some of Canada’s most influential artists including Hayden, Joel Plaskett, Buck 65, Matt Mays and Blue Rodeo. If you haven’t heard any of these artists, be sure to check them out.
So, it comes as no surprise that Murray left Cuff The Duke last year to focus on his studio and solo material. Dream Mountain Dream is his second solo disc and his signature sound is instantly recognizable.
The title track opens the album with sparkling guitar strums and camouflaged synths as Murray’s voice breaks through the mist reminding me of George Harrison’s sturdy timbre. “The Wind is Trying to Kill Me” is pure Duke and patiently builds up layers of country-soul followed up with the power-pop masterpiece “Assess The Mess” which grooves beautifully in the chorus – easily one of 2012’s most memorable songs. The rest of the album is a complete delight as many of the songs creep into your conscience after multiple listens especially “My New World”, “You Are My Girl” and “Song After The Storm”.
These songs look to the present to find hope in the future and resonate quite strongly with me. Dream Mountain Dream is a charming listen that solidifies Murray’s signature sound and puts him in the national spotlight as a major solo artist. (Come Undone Records) ~ 4 Stars