The Alan Tyler Show reviews 2015
Three Chords and the Truth
Ri-Ra (July 2002)
This debut solo album from Rockingbirds' leading light Alan Tyler is like a favourite overcoat; the more you experience it, the more familiar and enjoyable it becomes as it moulds itself to you. Ostensibly a country ballads album, this is a little more than just that. if you avoid the opening two and last tracks and concentrate on the rest, what's left are eight core tracks of the kind that might be heard on any US country station by more feted artists of pedigree than Tyler can currently claim. Such is the quality of the songs tha, after a few plays, you will feel you've been humming them since before Willie Nelson went grey. Songs such as Knee High, Tina and Ivanhoe will become old friends and you will be glad of it.
Bucketful of Brains 62 (Aug 2002)
Rather incongruously hitched to the Heavenly Records bandwagon of the early 90s, The Rockingbirds were arguably ahead of their time. Hugely influenced by the cosmic cowboy country-rock of the late 60s/early 70s, they peaked too early to be embraced by the alternative country/Americana movement that came along a few years later.
Now having taken stock, singer/songwriter Alan Tyler has returned (with a few other "birds in tow) with a masterful release, shunning, to an extent, the more obvious country inflections in favour of a amore rustic, pastoral glow.
There's certainly some honky-tonkin' stuff here - "There's a Place In My Heart I Call Texas" and the jaunty "Nickel In a Diamond Mine" to name but two - but the brooding opener "Everybody Is A Cowboy Now" sets a thoughtful scene, accentuated by the Morricone-esque guitar fills of Paul Lush. Elsewhere "Knee High" is pure folk, while the gentle waltz of "Tina" recalls Brinsley Schwarz at their most bucolically introspective.
Faithful is an exquisitely peaceful recording that suggests that whilethe alt.country crowd gets off on the bluff and buster of Ryan Adams,Tyler, in spite of his affection for Waylon Jennings, may be taking the long road of the quintessentially English troubadour.
The Independent, August 2002
"Tyler is one of the best songwriters of his genre and era."
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