The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - Musicreviews - LAUREN MUR­PHY

Hobo Real World Record­ings

If you thought that the days of mod­ern acous­tic gui­tar he­roes ended with Damien Rice, you’d be wrong. Char­lie Win­ston, the “Big in France” brother of the “Big in Ire­land” Tom Bax­ter, is one of sev­eral car­ry­ing on the tra­di­tion of strummed love songs and heartrend­ing pi­ano bal­lads. His aptly ti­tled sec­ond al­bum is an as­sort­ment of sen­ti­men­tal hobo-folk tunes bol­stered by or­ganic pro­duc­tion and a pol­ished back­ing band. The swarthy-voiced song­writer’s at­tempts at so­cial com­men­tary ( Gen­er­a­tion Spent) won’t be both­er­ing Billy Bragg any time soon, and its gen­tle acous­tic heart­beat oc­ca­sion­ally flat­lines through sheer dull­ness, but there’s a like­abil­ity about some of th­ese songs, par­tic­u­larly the catchy, scuffed pop of Like a Hobo, that will ap­peal to fans of Paolo Nu­tini, New­ton Faulkner, and yes . . . even Tom Bax­ter. www.char­lie win­

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