Words: Thomas Brent.
Adam Cohen carries a surname of some weight. His father Leonard is regarded as one of the greatest songwriters in recent times, and a brilliant poet and writer. His name is known around the world and he is highly respected in the arts world. Adam hasn’t had as illustrious a career and almost quit music back in 2007, unsatisfied with his sound. He has returned now though with a new album We Go Home, set for release in September.
When Adam followed his father into a career in music, comparisons were inevitably going to be drawn, and perhaps that is unfair. However this album is full of references and nods to Cohen Sr. so to ignore the connection would be wrong, and it seems that Adam is content for that connection to be there.
We Go Home is a love album, almost from start to finish. The simple sound that mostly permeates the album, consisting of acoustic guitar and gentle percussion, allows the emphasis to fall on Adam’s lyrics. The opening track ‘Song of Me and You’ gets the love train rolling with the line ‘Don’t speak of love as if it’s broken’. This song manages just the right amount of cheesiness that is associated with love songs, however that cheesiness certainly crosses the line later in the album.
‘Love Is’ could be ripped straight from a comedic spoof, ‘Love is the most beautiful word that you ever heard, love is a line from hallelujah’. The mention of ‘Hallelujah’ is just one of a few allusions to Leonard, which might be a nice touch if the lyrics weren’t dripping so much in soppiness.
‘Fall Apart’ opens with the line ‘They will speak of my father, when he’s not around’ and is almost certainly a dedication to Leonard. Actually it is one of the strongest tracks on the album and showcases what Adam can do best; gentle ballads with insightful lyrics.
The lyrics on this album constantly straddle the line of being extremely cringey and romantic, and actually being the right amount of delicate. ‘Uniform’ is thrown in as a typical inspirational song with a chorus that is trying desperately hard to convince people to get out and change the world. Then again ‘So Much To Learn’ has a catchy chorus and much more associable lyrics.
Titular track ‘We Go Home’ is certainly the standout song. It has a Mumford and Sons folk rock sound, with a big sing-along chorus to boot. It is the most contemporary sounding of all the songs and could definitely be found doing the rounds on mainstream radio.
Listening to this album in the background is a perfectly ideal situation, the sound is gentle and yet at times uplifting. There are some very fitting string sections that offer an added element that does a lot for some of the tracks. The problem, however, is when some of the romanticised lyrics reach you and you can’t help but cringe, and suddenly the tenderness of the track is undermined. If cheesy is your thing, then snap this up. If though, you any aversion to open-hearted, confessional love songs, then maybe try not to listen too closely.
Released: 15th September.
Label: Cooking Vinyl.