On ‘Painkillers’, the first solo album from Brian Fallon, the former front man for The Gaslight Anthem seemed to want to put a little distance between himself and that band he fronted for more than a decade. He returns this year with his second record ‘Sleepwalkers’ and seems more at peace with who he is as a performer. Teaming up with producer Ted Hutt, who recorded the breakthrough album ’59 Sound,’ Fallon calls on a number of different influences on this record. Though It really doesn’t matter where Fallon takes his music, there is no getting away from that voice. Fallon has a voice seemingly made made from gravel, and while he doesn’t typically stretch his vocals, there are times on ‘Sleepwalkers’ he pushes that range to the limits. One of those is on “Watson,” a highlight track found near the end of the record.
Taking its cue from many of the greatest songs of all time, “Watson” is about lost love and regret. The song takes place in the narrator’s head as he tries to come to terms with a difficult breakup and the feeling that he will grow old and alone. It’s a place most people have been in their lives, and Fallon uses this universal theme to tell a very personal story using the city of London as his background.
“Lord I worry when I get old I’ll be lonesome
Chasing all the umbrellas in London
Every footstep in Angel Station
For even the scent of her perfume again
Watching detectives chase the one that got away”
Throughout the song, you can hear Fallon strain to hit certain notes, mirroring the pain the narrator is feeling. As the song fades out he quietly sings one last time, “I don’t want to go on my own,” and you know that he is broken.
Brian Fallon is currently on tour supporting his new record and will be at the House of Blues in Chicago in April. He will be back again in August as The Gaslight Anthem commemorate the 10th anniversary of the ’59 Sound.’ However, for now check out “Watson” below and let me know what you think.