The 29-year old Melbourne based musician Christian Bizzarri has been gigging around for just over twelve years. In that time he’s played in bands such as; Morning and the Sleepy Kids, Loveletting, Major Major, Jerry Falwell Destroyed Earth, The Girlfriend Pillow, Pyramid Animals, Cake Lust and Big Smoke.
Bizzarri left Big Smoke near the end of 2013 with the intent of focusing on his solo career. He recorded sporadically over the next two years and also worked as a stage actor and appeared in a few short films, finally releasing his solo debut Run from Home in March of this year.
On Run from Home Bizzarri explores the common themes found in the cannon of the singer-songwriter: love, despair, obsession, guilt, religion, etc., but he doesn’t ever let the music, a spare and slightly tinny acoustic guitar, drag any of the songs down into the mud to try and extract from his listeners an unearned sympathy, rather he gives us sparse chords, ripe harmonies and lyrics untainted by the freshly broken heart, but rather one that has not yet broken but can tell that trouble is on the way.
Run from Home opens with the alt-country rambler, “For You.” It is the oldest song on the record, having been written in 2010 with the rest of the songs not being penned until two years later. Despite its dark themes the ending contains a sense of hopefulness on the writer’s part. Keeping with the theme glossy disparity “If You Wanna Leave,” about an older guy trying to pressure a younger girl to elope with him, is about as catchy as they come.
Even when Bizzari tries to delve into the darker side of life, as he does on the slow and melodic “(Untitled) Borrowed Time,” or the Big Star inspired “Let it Show,” or the pretty pop balladry of gently brilliant “The Finer Points” he never lets the darkness overshadow the songs. The difference is that Bizarri reports on sorrow and sadness and doesn’t wallow in it. It’s a refreshing and much welcomed change to the onslaught of acoustic broken heart records that grow like weeds.
Although its roots lie in a broken relationship, Run from Home never feels like a breakup album. Instead it seems like a few chapters glimpsed in the biography of a life that we can all relate to.
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