Ben Glover’s Atlantic spans both time and space, connecting two musical and geographical worlds with only the artist and his songs standing at the intersection. You see, Glover is an Irishman in the South — Tennessee, to be exact. However, the portraits he paints of his adopted homeland feel like anything but an outsider looking in; instead, they come across as utterly authentic tales of a man searching for his roots, artistic and otherwise.
Throughout Atlantic, Glover guides the listener with imagery that can only come from the Mississippi Delta — mudbanks and blackbirds, whiskey and pecan trees. While songs like “This World Is a Dangerous Place,” “The Mississippi Turns Blue,” and “How Much Longer Can We Bend?” draw you inward to search for a private salvation, the tent revival moments of “Oh Soul” and “Take and Pay” make you want to clap your hands, stomp your feet, and ask for redemption right out loud.
Then there’s the bluesy grit of “Too Long Gone,” the lonesome waltz of “True Love’s Breaking My Heart,” and the acoustic drive of “Prisoner” which all lead to what might well be Atlantic’s centerpiece, the ominous Southern gothic drama that is “Blackbirds.” At the end of the journey, the quiet melancholy of “New Year’s Day” lays you down easy, like water lapping gently on the shore leaves a softened stone in its wake.
– Kelly McCartney