ELEANOR MC EVOY

Love Must Be Tough

2008-10-07

Dublin's Eleanor Mc Evoy gets grittier on this CD, using songs written by men (and not typically covered by women), as well as some new compositions of her own to convey some hard-learned and world-weary advice to those still fightin' for love and a decent life. The opener, "Mother's Little Helper" of Rolling Stones fame, starts with the famous line "What a drag it is getting old" and the hard-fought lessons of the narrator keep on coming throughout the tracks. But I didn't find the music depressing; rather it is delivered as sound -- if a bit lip-curled -- advice from a survivor. The title track sums it up, a fine new song by Eleanor, co-written with music legend Johnny Rivers (remember "Summer Rain"?). I liked the percussion-only background of Sly Stone's "If You Want Me to Stay" and the horns on the Van Morrison-ish "Roll Out Better Days." My hunch that Eleanor is, in the end, still encouraging us to keep on keepin' on was confirmed by the nod-and-a-wink rockabilly Nick Lowe closer "I Knew the Bride." Who needs Dr. Phil when we have Eleanor? 10/08 Michael J. F-Rock

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