Music » Rhythm & Views

The Einweck Brothers: Beautiful Lonesome (One Bun)

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Siblings Bob (vocals) and John (piano) are longtime local musicians who've arranged some familiar rock and country tunes—as well as one original—for this mellow jazz outing. It's not the most-challenging listen, but it contains moments of quiet pleasure. Tucson music vets Rene Camacho and "Uncle" Dave Jeffrey sit in on bass and drums, respectively.

Perhaps the most-radical track, at least in this format, is the Beatles' "Yer Blues," in which Bob allows some grit to slip in around the edges of his clean tenor—almost as if Mose Allison were taking a stab at the number—to which John adds restrained barrelhouse piano. The Einwecks transform Greg Brown's "Lately" into a smooth R&B-folk number. Neil Young's "Only Love Can Break Your Heart" sounds like an outtake from Burt Bacharach, and the song has never wallowed in pity more.

Bob's voice is an acquired taste. It's not the most dynamic instrument, and sometimes, it sounds as if he is straining, but he knows how to sing within his limitations—not unlike, say, Willie Nelson and John Prine, both of whom are covered here. On his best performances, Bob sounds like an old friend taking a few turns during an intimate living-room jam session. John shines throughout.

Although Jimmy Webb's "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" sounds initially like a happy-hour piano-bar indulgence, John's fiery keyboard flurries provide a strong finish. Dylan's "Going, Going, Gone," by the way, is interpreted as an easy-listening reflection, which adds to its poignancy.

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