David Massengill

The Return

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David Massengill's second commercial release contains a good selection of the classic songs that have earned him his national reputation ("The Great American Dream," "Sightseer," "Jesus, the Fugitive Prince") and others equally good, though perhaps not as immediately forceful. Steve Addabbo's production sustains Massengill's dulcimer-based arrangements with a modern setting. The traditional sounding melodies are here in abundance, but in the end, it is the lyrical nature of Massengill's songs that keep the listener's attention. "Rider on an Orphan Train" is a poigniant beginning to this record's journey through America's present age. The loss of place in this song reflects the fragile innocence in our country that was beginning around the time the orphan trains crossed the continent. "The Great American Dream" is understated, blunt in its restating of the nation's promise. Other highlights are "Perfect Love" and the wrenching "What's Wrong with the Man Upstairs."

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