Andy Mason turns in a compelling and seasoned effort on his fine new CD, "Stories Told," a stripped-down, 9-song set of original contemporary folk songs. Sounding, at times, much like veteran singer-songwriter, Loudon Wainwright III, the San Francisco-based Mason dashes off hooks and intriguing narratives with the ease and carelessness of one who has plenty to spare. Comparable to - but not as laid back as - Jack Johnson, Mason's best songs, like "Glowin Ember" and "Dark Eyed Junco," come ready-equipped with the kind of melodies that are both immediate and lasting. Other terrific numbers, like "Teatime" and "Piano Chords," find the folk singer weaving words and spinning yarns with the acumen of a practiced storyteller. With only minimal accompaniment, Mason's bright and ringing acoustic guitar sets the tone for all his songs, but it's his wayfaring troubadour's voice that sets these performances apart from many a singer. For fans of Dylan, Steve Goodman, John Prine, or Steve Forbert, Andy Mason's "Stories Told" CD continues the tradition of meaningful and endearing American folk music.
-Rice B. and the RadioIndy reviewer team
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