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Posted on December 10th, 2008 (12:47 pm) by Sean Morrissey

Where singer/songwriter/frontman Andy Hull found time among Manchester Orchestra’s intense touring and recording schedule to pursue any semblance of a solo project is a mystery to me, but it’s good news for any of you Folk revivalists out there. The Eventually Home, by Hull’s pseudonym, Right Away, Great Captain! is a great little record. Coming off 2007’s debut “the Bitter End,” Hull maintains a distinctly Independent approach to folk music somewhat reminiscent of “Aeroplane-era” Neutral Milk Hotel.
Hull wastes no time setting the tone of the album with the opener “Down to Your Soul.” The song’s familiar folk chord arrangement and melody, though predictable, is comforting to the ear and easily aided by Hull’s soft, southern rasp. Lyrics like “I’m a good man, are you a good man? Does a good man take you home?” provide the brutal honesty that is Right Away Great Captain’s forte.

One of the shortest tracks on the album, “Devil Dressed in Blue” is highlighted by a full chorus of harmonies whose notes follow the progression of the guitars chord’s until the acoustic fades and the listener is left with only leading vocal and a full choir of support. With “Cutting off the Blood to Ten” Hull’s painful styling carries the familiar quiver of an early Bright Eyes record, taking away from song’s message. “Once Like You” follows in similar suit, but with its single note piano crashes and disturbed lyrics (“I will haunt our children until they believe there is no God to stop my plan”) the song manages to leave a more deep and lasting impression.

Catchy though it may be, “What a Pity” falls on the same already familiar chords of the album’s first track. It has all the makings of a hit single, but its importance cracks under the weight of a song already heard. For “Father Brian Finn,” Hull straps up his electric for its first appearance alongside the strongest vocal performance on the album. The guitar’s hollowed reverb makes for as sound a pairing to wail of its wielder, more so than any on the album. “Memories from a Shore” picks the pace of “What a pity” with muted electric guitar and the ever-present one note piano pops. The chorus is terribly infectious with a multilayered blending of vocal highs and lows, as well as an unexpected accordion appearance. Upon the album’s first listen, this will surely be the song listeners find themselves humming on their way to the bus station or in between bites of a quick corporate lunch.

Sadly the biggest hit-or-miss track on the album is also the longest; “I am a Vampire” clocks in at just under 7 minutes and is an abrupt change of direction to an otherwise congruent album. The heavy rock guitar, crashing symbols, and relatively aimless pace would seem better suited on a Manchester Orchestra record than an acoustic solo effort.

Thankfully faith is restored in the bare-boned closer “I was a Cage,” a fitting end to a beautifully somber album. Hull’s songwriting is at its most poignant with “it has to have been a year since I was sober, and I made a point to pinch my skin again,” highlighting the thoughts of a tortured musician. In just 37 minutes Right Away, Great Captain! have brought something new to the neo folk table, offering a southern heartache and indie sensibility that make The Eventually Home an album most suitable of a winter’s warm fireside listen.

Track Listing:
1. Down to Your Soul (3:14)
2. Devil Dressed in Blue (1:50)
3. Cutting off the Blood to Ten (2:31)
4. Once Like You (5:31)
5. What a Pity (1:47)
6. Father Brian Finn (5:30)
7. Memories from a Shore (2:22)
8. On No, I Tried (3:03)
9. I am a Vampire (6:55)
10. I was a Cage (4:30)

right away great captain
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