There are those who support the troops while remaining opposed to the war.
The territory traveled in this collection of jaunty folk-tinged drinking ditties, Full Circle, leads straight to some smoky hole-in-the-wall dive where we could all find common ground over a pint or a drop of scotch. Maybe.
All that said, it’s a little too silly to put on before the first few rounds. The execution doesn’t seem forced, but it’s hard to stay too focused on the rapid-fire delivery of 23 tracks.
There’s a lot of history and standards in these songs. From the balladeering of “White Cliffs of Dover” to the raucous “I’m Henry the Eighth/Who Were You With Last Night,” there’s enough here for a few late night spins with some nostalgic buddies, but not much else. Judging from the selection of the songs and their delivery, that’s all it’s really meant for.
This record sounds like Steve Curnow had a lot of fun making it. There’s a tinge of it being a labor of love in the liner notes, with dedications to the Armed Forces and their families, the American Parkinson’s Association, and the V.F.W. Autism and Cancer Center in Nashville. As long as Mr. Curnow and his buddies continue having a good time and supporting the good work going on in Middle Tennessee, we can’t begrudge them the hangovers and late nights they’ll inspire.
As for me, I may have to support their mission but not their music. Perhaps I take myself a little too seriously to have that much of a good time. So for now I’ll hang back with the “sad bastards” who fought in the same war as Belle and Sebastian.