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Leeroy Stagger: Dream It All Away

Chronicling fresh potholes on the endless highway.

It doesn’t really matter if you don’t know anything of Leeroy Stagger’s decade-long career so far because the road-hardened Alberta singer-songwriter encapsulates it all on his latest album.

Ten Long Years is how long it’s taken ‘to show the bruises’; Angry Young Man explains the kind of guy he used to be and the kind of guy he is now; Dreams cuts to the stark, dark truth of his life on the road.

Elsewhere you get snapshots from the urban wastelands on Living In America and the environmental wastelands on Poison The Well. And there’s a caustic Dylan-esque rant, New Music Biz Blues, where he ends up stuck on a farm instead of Mobile.

He’s travelling a well-worn route with songs that resonate somewhere between Bob Seger, Bruce Springsteen and Steve Earle. But there’s always room for another perceptive point of view.

Hugh Fielder has been writing about music for 47 years. Actually 58 if you include the essay he wrote about the Rolling Stones in exchange for taking time off school to see them at the Ipswich Gaumont in 1964. He was news editor of Sounds magazine from 1975 to 1992 and editor of Tower Records Top magazine from 1992 to 2001. Since then he has been freelance. He has interviewed the great, the good and the not so good and written books about some of them. His favourite possession is a piece of columnar basalt he brought back from Iceland.