Charlie Betts is a musician hailing from the UK who recently released a twelve-song album entitled It Rained All Night. It Rained All Night is reminiscent of soft rock/Americana music that you would hear in the ‘60s. Betts implements soft sounding synths, piano, and guitar and often has a similar palette of sounds to that of elevator music. I’m not trying to say that is a bad thing but the production is unequivocally similar to the genre on certain songs. It’s pretty much the production you would hear on a Kenny Rogers record.
Betts has a pretty good singing voice. It took a bit of time getting used to it but with repeated spins I was starting to get accustomed to its gentle quality.
The album starts off with “Anything That I'm Able,” which instills a feeling of traveling and moving west. The generic sounding synths were thematic and oddly hopeful. I’m pretty sure that not too much music in 2014 sounds like this. Betts switches things up on the song “The Meaning Of Freedom,” which sounds like a anti-war, protest song from the ‘60s. I thought Bett’s vocal sounded tailor made for this style of music. He worked it and it coalesced well with the acoustic instrumentation.
As the album progresses, Betts flirts with a number of different styles. “Take My Advice” is pretty much straight up country that features some slick pedal steel guitar while “This Is The Way (We Mend A Broken Heart)” is a slow moving melancholy ballad. The second half of the album continues with a number of strong songs that include “Coming Home,” “Those Sad Songs” and “Back To You.”
It Rained All Night can pretty much be split between soft rock/pop and country/folk music. The soft rock/pop does implement cheesy sounding synths but the songs manage to sound uniquely heartfelt. All things considered I think Betts pulls off country/folk a bit better. I have an ambivalent relationship with the record. Either way I encourage you to take a listen and make up your own mind.
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