Clint Alphin, Straight to Marrow – Review
by Constance Tucker
Clint Alphin is a country artist that grew up in the rich North Carolinian music region. His state heros deeply influenced his songcraft and style. Alphin’s tunes are ripe with melody and lyrics that speak to the everyday person. Alphin moved to Nashville in 2003 and has to date released an EP and three full-length studio albums. 2019 will bring a new album to light titled Straight to Marrow. The album lineup includes: Clint Alphin: lead and harmony vocals, acoustic guitar, banjo; Neilson Hubbard: bass drums, melotron, organ, piano (“Prove Me Wrong”); Kris Donegan: guitars; Pat Buchanan: guitars (“The Exception,” “You Lied,” “Should Have Loved”); Will Kimbrough: guitars (“Bless Your Heart”); Evan Hutchings: drums (“Ain’t That Something,” “Out To California,” “Grandfather; Grandmother”); Dan Mitchell: piano (“Bless Your Heart”); Dean Marold: bass (“Prove Me Wrong,” “Nobody’s Perfect,” “Patchwork Journey,” “Write Me Off”); Lindsay Ellyn: harmony vocals (“You Lied,” “Should Have Loved”); Audrey Spillman Hubbard: harmony vocals (“Grandfather; Grandmother”); Mia Rose Lynne: harmony vocals (“Prove Me Wrong,” “Write Me Off”).
A highlight tune features an introspective spirit “Should Have Loved,” about missed opportunities and wounds of the past. Alphin has devised this song to have a traveling feel about it. His voice is sincere and heartfelt with a hint of angst nestled in hope. Representative of his upbringing clearly “Bless Your Heart,” pokes fun in a satirical light-hearted way in this somewhat comedic tune. Alphin’s voice deepens in tone and twang. The lyrics are well-crafted and will certainly add sincere joy and chuckle to your day.
Whereas “Prove me Wrong,” takes a darker tone of confessional rebound. Longing for what was and how it will affect his current love status. The song offers hope of new love and looking beyond the pain. Similarly, “Out To California,” and “Nobody’s Perfect,” deal with similar subject matters. What each tune offers are memorable songwriting, an easy going style about Alphin’s vocals, but most of all how he crafts his voice to be the perfect vehicle for each song. You will find on each song, a timber that elevates the story as he uses each lyric to also convey a character in the story, a heartfelt place of connection with his listener. You can also tell when a songwriter is connected to what he or she is writing. On Straight to Marrow this is immediately evident with Alphin’s tunes. Highly recommended.