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As chief steward of Chicago’s alt-country combo Dolly Varden, Steve Dawson’s status as an Americana original is unquestioned. Yet even though his tenure with the band has produced five albums over the course of a 15-year history, Dawson still has plenty to offer individually. This, his second solo album (third if one counts ‘Duets’, recorded with foil Diane Christiansen), stakes out new terrain by embedding soul, a hint of gospel and even some brass into his standard MO. The results can be surprising at times, with strong arrangements and a series of stunning vignettes like “Obsidian”, “Long Overdue,” “A Conversation With No One” and “Today She Found the Way (To Break My Heart)” adding up to one superb set. M Music & Musicians magazine

Steve Dawson and his singer / guitarist wife Diane Christiansen have been mixing cutting-edge rock with country & western in their band Dolly Varden for years. ‘I Will Miss The Trumpets And The Drums’, Dawson’s first solo effort since ‘Sweet Is The Anchor’ in 2005, offers further proof that he’s a master of this musical hybrid, and shows him drawing from other genres as well. It’s a labor-intensive project that involves him playing several instruments, with occasional help from guest musicians. “Today She Found The Way (To Break My Heart)” evokes Van Morrison as Dawson’s soulful vocals exude heartache on lines line, “I never wanted to face this kind of loneliness, but I guess I’m gonna have to start / because today she found the way to break my heart.” “Goodbye,” which finds Dawson backed by a full band, is another R&B number, and he gets back to country rock on the title track, “Worry, Worry, Worry,” and “Obsidian.” On the short but gorgeous “I Wish That I Could Believe In You Again,” Dawson creates multiple layers of his vocals, while on “Long Overdue,” he opts for a more basic approach, as if he’s performing live in a small club -Illinois Entertainer

Steve Dawson has released a solo album that owes more to Crowded House and the Hollies than the normal influences that I would expect from someone with his background. ‘I Will The Trumpets And The Drums’ has a nice groove throughout and songs like “It’s Not What You Think,” “A Conversation With No One” and “Preaching To The Choir” all stand a chance of getting quality airplay on the radio. When I say ‘airplay’ I mean the sort of programme that plays album tracks, because that’s what this is – an album of songs, not just a collection of loosely thrown together tracks as is so common these days. The harmonies and phrasing definitely bring back memories of Crowded House and even Stevie Winwood’s recent solo work. The songs, playing and production are all of the very highest quality and Steve Dawson’s voice sounds superb now that it has been given free range to sing songs that only a post 30-year-old could write and sing. The final song, “It’s Not What You Think,” with its occasional pedal steel, cornet and vibraphone is one of the ‘nicest’ love songs that I’ve heard in a long time. Track it down – you won’t regret it. ‘I Will Miss The Trumpets And The Drums’ certainly deserves to introduce Steve Dawson to a much larger audience. -Maverick Magazine (UK)