Richard Julian

Richard Julian

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Blasting open like a folk-rock firecracker, Richard Julian's self-titled album is full of songs and stories that are urgent and tender and always engaging. Fronting hard-edged drivers and beautiful memorials, Julian's raspy, whispery voice draws the listener in, begging for attention. And along with co-producer Chris Cunningham (who contributes everything from guitars and a bouzouki to a merchandise hook and an appropriately heavy "B-3 hernia"), bass man Dave Richards, and percussionist Mike Shapiro, Julian delivers an album worthy of that attention. Speaking of and for the world famous and the deserving -- from Charlie Parker to his own musical hero Charlie Lewis -- Julian and his "extended family" take listeners from the dark depths of "Bottom of the Sea" to the shivery breaths of "Siberia," stopping begrudgingly in Kansas City along the way. Though Julian affronts the patriotic design of his own album by going north of the border for the fourth of July, he is able to declare his independence from the folk-rock world and offer a special voice for all to appreciate and enjoy.

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