As an occasional photographer I understand the importance of capturing the mundane. Whilst spectacular images can inflame artistic senses a picture of a corner shop can trigger memories and not just of people that knew that particular shop, but people that knew shops like that particular one. The same is true of film whilst box office likes the spectacular kitchen sink dramas told far more interesting stories and films like "A Taste Of Honey" not only tell about the times they were filmed, but also universal truths, in black and white.
Johnno Casson is a master of universal truths in black and white. There is an honesty in his songs and sometimes it's brutal. "Human Good" is almost a question, almost a statement but without a full stop or question mark just to leave it ambiguous, which is a good thing.
People are after all human. That means they make mistakes, they can be petty and vindictive and yet also kind and self-sacrificing and those many facets get captured in this album. Casson captures it like it is and if sometimes it can feel like a hurtful row, well that's how life is sometimes and sometimes life can be, well, affirming.
That honesty in the narrative doesn't mean that there is a scrimping and saving on the melody, nor the poetry, words are definitely a tool Johnno knows how to handle and the accompaniment is difficult to fault as well. There are flights of whimsy in the album, but then we all have dreams and minds wander.
Like the photo of the corner shop you may not realise the importance immediately, it's just a picture of a shop, but then you realise it's not. "Human Good" may not be your photograph, but you'll have the collective memories, it's just that Johnno Casson aka Snippet has wrapped them in an aural bundle for you to come back to and reflect and then who knows? Dream of a better future?
|Levi Cuss: Just Below Radio Vols 1 & 2||Tracey Browne: The Doctrine Of Song|
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