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“We’ve sung Jesse Manley’s praises before, and we’re not ashamed to do so again, especially with his first full-length album finally in the can and ready for release on April 29th. Though the young singer-songwriter sounds nothing like Slim Cessna or Munly, there’s a melodramatic darkness that he shares with those name brand Denver acts. Montana-born Manley has been promising an album since he first hit my radar more than two years ago, but the wait has been worth it. The songs are complex without being overly complicated, the lyrics are evocative without being obvious, and the instrumentation is organic and varied. Banjo and mandolin figure prominently, but this is no bluegrass album. It’s mountain music, most definitely, but with a healthy dose of blues and indie rock. If there’s a single distinguishing feature of “Devil’s Red,” however, it’s Manley’s voice. With a subtle brogue, it conveys depth, melancholy and a wisdom that exists somewhere outside of our wor”
“Just goes to show you … I received this fine album a couple months ago. It lived on my dusty old desk until this week, when I decided to clear things away. I sorted CDs a bit, coming across a few that I wanted to re-preview, just in case. Like Jesse Manley’s fine album. Manley is a talented Denver folk/pop musician, with a voice somewhere between Jeff Finlin and Colin Meloy, and a musical sensibility not unlike those two. Manley and his producer Willey play just about every instrument on the album, with nice arrangements featuring occasional mando, banjo, lap steel and “Baldwin Fun Machine”. Why I didn’t respond to this CD immediately I might never know. But here it is now, and it deserves your attention (prob’ly sooner than later). ”
“thoughtful and introspective -- but retains a gritty, thousand-yard stare ”