As far back as the 15th century, the idea of a perfect lifestyle was summed up in the phrase, “Who loves not wine, women and song, remains a fool his whole life long.” Well, I don’t know anything about the women in Mark Adams’s life, but he certainly has the other two covered. As a vineyard-owning musician, he seems to have the important things in life sorted out.

And if the wine he bottles is as great as the music he makes, then it will be the toast of the town. California Bound, his new album, covers a lot of musical ground, yet all the songs, no matter how much they vary from track to track, always feel like perfect travelling companions and always like signature Mark Adams.

If Opener, She Was Crying is a country rock groover opening on a very Bryds-infused riff, and why not, Tongue Tied plays a purer rock card. And whereas Unconditional Love has some cool old-time vibes at its core, Loving You The Way I Do is a gorgeously seductive ballad. The title track is full of swing and swagger, Chasing After Margaritas is a fun dance-stomp, and Wait Until August is a love letter to young romance.

An excellent collection of songs and an album to savour, an album that soothes and seduces, much as I imagine his wine does.


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