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Dietrich Strause Dietrich Strause
Album: How Cruel That Hunger Binds
Label: Self Released
Tracks: 11

Boston, New England based Dietrich Strause is a new name to me. For this record , he approached several well known musicians from around New England's indie-folk scene, including Alec Spiegelman, Lyle Brewer, Amy Correia, and Mark Erelli, Great North Sound Society in Parsonsfield, Maine, became where it all happened, ably led by Zachariah Hickman and Sam Kassirer. As such, the album very much has its roots in New England, evident upon first listening. The songs lyrical, musical and vocal qualities are enhanced further by the musicianship; not least the inclusion of horns and woodwinds.

Strauss has, very interestingly ,I feel, said that the songs he writes are some of his closest friends. Historically, he has felt his music to be about goodbyes and loss; but this album, to him was the opposite end of the story, a new beginning. The music fits this; fresh, invigorated, full of energy.

Boy Born To Die is the song from which the CD takes its intriguing title; reflecting on nature, life and death and the cycle it all follows, with some very clever lyrics. Other stand out tracks, perhaps include Lying in Your Arms, Spring Has Sprung and the thought provoking, The Beast That Rolls Within.

This isn't necessarily an album I would have picked up, but I very much enjoyed listening to it. There is something quite raw, real and honest in his music; quite refreshing and definitely worth a listen.

Helen Mitchell