Kevin Devine has been a pretty busy guy over the years. When he wasn’t releasing solo albums in which the spirit of Elliott Smith lived on, he was collaborating with members of Brand New or recording an album with Manchester Orchestra under the Bad Books moniker. And now he has a now solo album out that isn’t really solo anymore. Whereas he was merely flirting with a full band on “Brother’s Blood”, he’s gone all out this time around. There isn’t a single song on “Between The Concrete & Clouds” that’s just Devine and his acoustic guitar. Instead we are treated to some most excellent indie tunes like “The First Hit” and the title track, which bring up welcome comparisons to Nada Surf and Death Cab.
All of the songs on here are mellow and breeze by… not in a carefree, uneventful kinda way. The songs are just so well arranged and well-written that they form a very cohesive album that is a treat to listen to. Longtime fans might feel let down by the direction Devine is heading in with his ‘new’ sound and his ‘simpler’ lyrics but meanwhile I’m enjoying the shit out of this album!