Singer/songwriter Dave Ford’s debut effort, Home, is a cycle of songs that question, grieve, and seek refuge from the emotional fallout of a friend’s suicide. Broaching tragedy without wallowing in morbid confession is no small feat and Ford delivers brilliantly on every track.
Ford’s disarming voice and infectious guitar hooks propel lyrics that unflinchingly explore the depths of mental illness and loss.
On “Every Tomorrow,” the albums opening track, Ford is joined by guitarist Lars Frederiksen of Rancid whose riffing charges the emotionally taut verses:
I want you to see me in this brightly colored place/I want you to think that I’m OK/I don’t want you to see me in the blackness of the night/I don’t want you to see my fading light…
“January 29” seeks to understand a tormented mind contemplating suicide. It begins with a mélange of taunting voices that course hauntingly through the music. By song’s end the hateful voices rise seamlessly into angelic choirs, suggesting a man’s hoped for peace in death that the living are left to ponder.
The title track, Home, harkens to the White Album with multi-layered instrumentation and shimmery slide guitar for an almost orchestral finish. Even the simple joys of life find their way into otherwise dark terrain (as in “Somewhere”), and “My Dear God” adds humor where you least expect it.
Hard-edged as it is introspective, Home is a gift to the listener and a resolution for the artist. Catch Ford live. He’s a must see.