The Proclaimers

Sunshine on Leith

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Barely causing a ripple upon its 1988 release, Sunshine on Leith, the second album by Edinburgh's the Proclaimers, received new life five years down the road when the infectious "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" became a fluke hit following its inclusion on the soundtrack to Benny & Joon. Although nothing else on the album quite matches that Top Ten's energy or quirky charm, the duo's (twin brothers Charlie and Craig Reid) sophomore effort still manages to be a highly listenable and thoroughly engaging blend of folk and pop with several nods to their Scottish heritage. Many of the lyrics touch upon the subject of domestic and familial bliss as on "Then I Met You"; the jaunty, wide-eyed wonder of "Sean"; and the lovely, waltz-like title track (featuring some gorgeous harmonies). There's a thread of optimism that runs through most of the album only broken on the few occasions when the two stray from the comforts of home and hearth (as on "What Do You Do"). Other standout tracks include the upbeat swagger of "I'm On My Way" and the steel-guitar twang of their cover of Steve Earle's "My Old Friend the Blues."

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