CHAD PRICE – SMILE SWEET FACE


Drag The River/All singer Chad Price’s solo debut is in the running for album of the year and as far as I am concerned it’s there without a doubt. I’ve had this album for a few days now and I have been trying to put how I felt about into words and failing. To start with I love the album from start to finish but I haven’t been able to find the words to impart how Smile Sweet Face makes me feel. I can’t review this album by just telling you how cool Chad’s lyrics are or how the understated acoustic accompaniment sounds amazing. There is something more to this album than just sounding good and having the right hook at the right place. It makes me feel something and last night I was finally able to put my finger on what that thing is. It feels like coming down…

I don’t mean it feels like crashing after a weekend of doing blow like a Wall Street trader in the nineties. I mean that Chad Price has created a mood across this album that feels like the sweat filled moment after sex where you fall back on the bed exhausted but more than satisfied. The slow chords and Chad’s heartfelt vocals slow everything around you down just a little bit. The opening line in The Cross is “It feels good when the sun’s out, feels good with my arms outstretched on this cross” and only gets better from there. With the mood waxing and waning across these ten tracks I suppose this album won’t be one that everyone likes. Actually I know it won’t because my brother just didn’t get it and all I could do is stare at him dumbfounded and confused. I guess if you are anything like him then you probably won’t feel any empathy when Chad belts out “Between church and a meth lab / can’t go on living without her laugh”. If you fall into that crowd then I truly feel sorry for you.

But you already knew I would like Chad’s solo effort considering how much I dig Drag The River didn’t you? What surprised me is how much this wasn’t a Drag The River album. I expected more Caleb’s Grave and what I got was something completely different. This is a different baring of the soul than the stuff Chad has done with DTR and rightfully so. This isn’t DTR minus Jon Snodgrass it is a powerful and moving collection of stripped down, soul baring, sometimes keening tracks that shouldn’t be missed.

Chad Price – This War
Chad Price – With Bleeding Wrists
Chad Price – Your Voice Is Music

You can pick this up over at Suburban Home in just about any format you like. I recommend grabbing the deal, I don’t know how long they’ll offer it for, where you get access to everything they release for life starting with this very record…