Rubyworks – 2004 – 43 minutes

Listening to The Devlins' music, the word 'effortless' comes to mind. From the arrangements, to the lyrics and the vocal performances, it's easy to tell that this is group of musicians at the top of their game. Their fourth album, 'Waves' is a testament to how good homegrown music can be.

Having enjoyed great success in the US, The Devlins are not exactly a household name at home, which is surprising, given the quality of their work. Their previous albums: 'Drift', 'Waiting' and 'Consent', evoke intimacy and are full of understated, mellow tunes that speak for themselves, both lyrically and musically. Their newest offering has the same intimate feel with singer/guitarist Colin Devlin really reaching out to the audience.

Tracks like 'Everything Comes Around', 'Someday' and 'Lazarus' are simply good songs that have wide ranging appeal, are well sung and well played, which is rare enough these days. Perhaps if we heard more music like this over the airwaves, we'd all have better taste.

The album's only letdown is a tendency towards similarity of tone, which makes a few of the songs sound much the same. But, with such a rare display of talent, that fault is easy to overlook.

Katie Moten

Tracklisting: Everything Comes Around – Sunrise – Careless Love – Someday – Lazarus – Don't Let it Break Your Heart – I Feel it When You're Gone – Coming Alive – Headstrong – Waves