Dreary & hazy for a melancholy hour
With a stunningly decade and more music career, English folk artist Michael David Rosenberg returns as Passenger with his latest LP, Songs for the Drunk and Broken Hearted. It’s available now across all streaming services.
Rosenberg has had such a long career dating back to even years like 2002. When introduced to Andrew Phillips, the two founded Passenger in 2003, and they wrote with inspiration from musical influences of Simon & Garfunkel and DJ Shadow. Their debut album, Wicked Man’s Rest, hit the scene in 2007; afterward, the group split in 2009 and has remained a solo project of Rosenberg ever since, and he has produced 13 studio albums (including the album from the band), with Songs for the Drunk and Broken Hearted being the 13th.
Stepping into this LP, if it wasn’t clear beforehand by the lamentingly dreary album cover of a clown appearing down on his luck with a bottle of liquor, this album is going to hit sad hours real-quick with soul-nailing melody strums. Opening with “Sword From The Stone,” this track has seen rising popularity as number three on Spotify, with over a million listens thus far and climbing; the song lives up to this LP’s bleak overtone with its melancholy lyrics and brilliant soft lament-full chords.
Giving a sensational paradox of cheery guitar strums opposite Rosenberg’s gloomy vocals, “Tip Of My Tongue” follows suit with an upbeat intro that stagnates into its persistent downhearted melody vibe throughout its verses and returning to that cheery intro in its choruses. With upbeat guitar strums, “What You’re Waiting For” comes in third on the LP and offers a jolly mood that opposes Rosenberg’s flat and woeful vocals that have people’s feet tapping away to the beat before moving over to “The Way That I Love You.” It remains unneeded to say that it follows its predecessor tracks with its gloomy vibes and is not to be mistaken with Faith Hill’s “Way You Love Me,” as the two share a similar title and are incomparable in quality and genre, but is a mistake that can easily be made.
With an almost dusty western setting drawn from a waning guitar chord, “Remember To Forget” is an overcast of energy presented by Rosenberg’s vocals and supporting fiddle pluck guitar strums that gives a pessimistic down-turn tune before the crux of Songs for the Drunk and Broken Hearted, “Sandstorm,” that may be the embodiment of tune and emotion of this album, a tune that can bring people to their knees with sorrow. Light-hearted in tune and melody, “A Song for the Drunk and Broken Hearted” plays afterward, washing away the dreary mood placed upon listeners by the previous track with fast heart-beating strums and sensational drums that lead into “Suzanne” that obeys to the LP’s down-hearted theme once more.
“Nothing Aches Like a Broken Heart” comes up the rear with another sorrowful melody to groove to a light-hearted ascended ensembled symphony lead by Rosenberg’s striking guitar chords. It leads people into the outro track, “London in the Spring,” that is as mournfully gloomy as a painting of an over-casted London breathed life through Rosenberg’s vocals.
For a gloomier experience to feel a lower level of sorrow and woe, the deluxe edition of the LP features all the tracks in acoustic in reversed order and is an experience unmatched. Rosenberg may have hit platinum with “Let Her Go,” but Songs for the Drunk and Broken Hearted is a must-hear for devoted fans of Passenger and indie-folk for an hour of premium music.