Clive Holden

Trains of Winnepeg

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A mix of spoken word poetry and well-manicured aural backdrops, Clive Holden's release suffers only from the fact that his prose may not be quite up to par with the musical selections he chose to back him. Moody and engaging, the pretty piano pieces ("Nanaimo Station," "Condo"), the slow-drip electronica ("Eighteen Thousand Dead in Gordon Head"), and the briskly upbeat riff that propels the title track all seem to eclipse the text they have been commissioned to support. Perhaps it's Holden's purposely stiff delivery, or the possibility that a 13-minute narrative about the difficulties of random encounters with death (the aforementioned "Eighteen Thousand Dead in Gordon Head") don't necessarily make for serviceable verse. Genuinely personal, but not quite universal (universally Canadian maybe?) enough to warrant exceptional attention, Holden might be better served turning to the keen ear he has for soundtracks.

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