Eric Britt is not new to the Georgia music scene. He is one of many that have not given up the flame as time has moved forward with them in tow. There is a figurative sweet spot in the American music world right now, and it’s not being run by the kids. It’s in the hands of yesterdays’ kids-people like Britt- the ones that toured the dark and dank dives of the 90s, the ones that remember seeing Collective Soul as an opening act, the ones that remember Chris Cornell when his hair was long, the days when Stomp and Stammer wasn’t a household name yet. The days before radio died and music festivals were still about music. These same kids, now older, are feeling that pull, that tug to get back to the music. Eric Britt never left, and knows yesterday’s kids well- he was the front man of popular Athens band Hazel Virtue. Though the band enjoyed major successes here and in South Carolina, Britt felt the need to retreat into himself and make something uniquely his. Packing up his life and moving to Savannah, Britt spent the last six years working on his debut solo album, Greener.
Greener is a mix of the musical ghosts of Britt’s past, a blend of Americana roots and angsty indie rock, an amalgamation of beautiful acoustic guitar composition and his pain- singed vocals, the power of which seem sometimes barely contained. This is a voice for the wide-open spaces and highways of the west. Britt shines brightest on the tracks which let him open it up and run- songs like Lemonade and Act Your Age. Britt feels at home equally with the unplugged reticence of Full Moon, the haunting melody and acoustic guitar interplay nicely. It’s easy to get caught up in Britt’s words, but there are also some beautiful piano and guitar arrangements flowing underneath- the first track, Miami to Maine, starts off as introspective as a Savannah sunrise, and Stella, the upbeat answer to Full Moon is a gentle cruise of a love song.
This is an album best appreciated from a CD player and a car seat, a concept in this day in age that’s not as common as it used to be. But even downloading, compressing, and playing it through an iPod isn’t enough to diminish the wanderlust and nostalgia Greener leaves behind.
Listeners can experience the new album online or live at Eric Britt's CD release party, February 16 at Smith's Olde Bar.