Dave Alpert may have stripped down his sound on the 6-song "My World" E.P., but there's nothing really "light" about the project.
Credit Alpert's blunt honesty_ whether telling you how he feels or describing a scene_ for giving "My World" its heft.
The title track opens the record on a prickly note as Alpert catalogs a fistful of stereotypes in a manner that shows how easily "my world" can become isolated from the real world.
Alpert doesn't brood long, though, shifting gears into the fun mandolin-and-banjo spiced "Postwoman." Move over Lovey Rita, Alpert has found a new public servant to desire.
"Shuffles the Clown" is the record's other character piece, and in this one Alpert tells the tale of a bullied kid who grows up to become the guy who makes other people laugh, wrapping it all in a bittersweet tone.
Alpert takes on a more personal tone with "That's Why I've Got to Leave," "A Long Long Way," and "Find My Way Back To You." In each case you can hear how Alpert subtly shades his work. "That's Why I've Got to Leave" has the saddest resolve, while "Find My Way Back to You" leaks optimism despite similarly dire romantic straits.
Alpert's earnest tone is burnished by an all-star cast of players that includes Sean Staples on mandolin, Steve Mayone on guitar, James Rohr on keys, Eric Royer on banjo, Dan Kellar on violin, Lou Ulrich on bass, both Chris Anzalone and Andy Plaisted on drums, and Kay McKinstry on back-up vocals.
Alpert and his live band (bassist Chuck Vath, guitarist Mike Castellana, drummer Anzalone, and mandolinist Staples) celebrate the release of "My World" with a show Thursday, July 11, at Atwood's Tavern, 877 Cambridge St., Cambridge. The music gets going around 10 p.m. and The Wild Sea is also on the bill. The $5 admission includes a download code for "My World." If you can't hit the show, you can check out the record on Alpert's Bandcamp site.
Here's "That's Why I've Got to Leave"
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