Martin Briley

The Salt in My Tears [EP]

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Another self-released EP, this time Briley offers up two new tracks in addition to two re-recordings of his biggest hit, "The Salt in My Tears" -- one slightly more rocking and with contemporary production compared with its '80s counterpart, and one acoustic (just Briley and an acoustic guitar) version. The two new recordings were done to free the hit song up from its contractual mire at Universal. But it is the new tracks that make this EP truly worthy of Briley fans -- "Hi-Rise Love Affair" is guitar riff-driven classic Briley, with his witty wordplay interwoven with catchy pop melodies to create another idiosyncratic classic. The chorus finds Briley back in falsetto, soaring to new heights along with the song's lyrics. It is definitively Martin Briley and feels comfortable alongside his '80s material, which is really saying something. And "Nothing" is another downtempo number that almost sounds like Pearl Jam when it kicks off, but quickly becomes recognizably Briley with the ballad-y chorus that evokes songs like "Maybe I've Waited Too Long" or "Underwater." The edge is slightly missing from Briley's vocal on "Nothing," but once he starts multi-tracking and adding in the orchestration, this song too is distinctively the work of the master as he croons, "Maybe you thought I just didn't care/I didn't know how." So while the single may be promoting the newly recorded "Salt in My Tears" versions, the meat and potatoes once you're in the door -- and the true prize for fans -- are in the two new tunes, both instant Briley classics in his inimitable style. A welcome stop-over until the next album.

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