In 2005, singer-songwriter Jason Collett temporarily stepped away from the Canadian super-collective Broken Social Scene to concentrate on writing and recording his own songs. He still occasionally collaborates with his erstwhile bandmates—BSS/Apostle Of Hustle guitarist Andrew Whiteman guests on Here's To Being Here, Collett's fifth solo disc—but his new work is grittier, sparser, and more Mississippi-inspired than anything BSS ever did. Collett occasionally succumbs to ye olde Bob Dylan/Woody Guthrie fetish, delivering quips with a syntax that can feel awkwardly familiar. But Here's To Being Here is the best kind of homage, a folk-gospel-blues mash-up that sounds like it could be The Velvet Underground's critically adored long-lost country record, if such a thing existed.
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