Review: Ben Caplan and the Casual Smokers – In the time of the great remembering

Got a shock with this one. I thought The Boss had made a mistake and sent me his bootleg remix of Fiddler on the Roof.

Anyhow, Ben Caplan has a massive beard and a flair for the unusual. Whisky soaked is a term often used incorrectly but not here. There is a strange gypsy Tom Waits-esque flavour to some tunes (‘Conduit’, ‘Stranger’) where Caplan is a possessed banshee growling into a gale. Then ‘Drift Apart’ and ‘Rest Your Head’ display a softer side. Caplan is an excellent storyteller and there is much to enjoy here a touch of theatre and drama all embellished with banjo, violin, clarinets, the works.

A refreshing record all round.

Words: Keefy

Ben Caplan & The Casual Smokers Facebook. Website. Twitter.

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