In 2007, Daniel Romano co-founded You’ve Changed Records, a label with a name that was probably inspired by what people were saying about his music. Romano first burst onto southern Ontario’s music scene in the mid-2000s as the singer-guitarist of four-piece hardcore band Attack in Black. The quartet released Marriage, an indie-rock LP complete with a radio-ready single, “Young Leaves,” followed by two collections of folky material, before Romano and his bandmates parted ways. The good news is that, regardless of the genre, Romano produces quality material—his last record, Sleep Beneath the Willow, made the Polaris long-list—and Come Cry With Me, his third solo country album, is no exception. On the 10-track release, the singer-songwriter alternates between playing the heartbreaker and the heartbroken, telling tales that, with enough twang and talk of tears, feel sufficiently believable. From opener “Middle Child” (the wonderings of an abandoned son) to closer “A New Love (Can Be Found),” which features a more hopeful sort of wallowing, Romano pairs vivid storytelling with classic country arrangements to create a record that’s equal parts tragic and earnest. While two upbeat tunes add a touch of levity to his mostly morose repertoire, the album could have used more sonic and lyrical variety. But Come Cry With Me comes as advertised: It’s lonesome yet inviting, and it’s worth a listen—especially if Romano’s latest genre foray lasts only as long as his previous one.
Playlist picks “Middle Child,” “Two Pillow Sleeper,” “A New Love (Can Be Found)”