Album/ To Live and Die in Your Arms
About the Artist: In early 2011, he release “Painful Words Of Loving Grace”, a collection of songs that told stories from Jared’s personal life to his family’s past. Produced by Jason Rubal (Dresden Dolls, Bitter Ruin), the record was met with great praise from critics, taking 4 and 5 star reviews from many music websites and publications. Not one to rest for too long, Jared hit the road once more, securing spots on national tours with Ernie Halter and Ingram Hill, as well as sharing stages with Candlebox, Vertical Horizon, Griffin House, Brendan James, Tony Lucca, Sam Grow, and Civil Twilight. During all of this touring, McCloud started to write songs dealing with the struggle of his failing marriage, and following a bitter divorce, launched a very successful Kickstarter campaign to successfully “crowd-fund” a new record. Recorded in late 2013 with Dave Pittenger (Matt Duke), “To Live And Die In Your Arms” is a collection of McCloud’s most personal songs yet released in 2014.
Review: To Live and Die in Your Arms is one release that certainly doesn’t disappoint. This is artist that brings to the table effective songwriting via a highly marketable musical delivery. This meshed with a one in a million Pop-Rock-Folk sound and effective visuals and vocals make for a very effective combination no doubt. For the record McCloud is just a breath away from Celtic Folk or even Country but skillfully and methodically never crosses the line into that realm. All songs are wonderfully simple but masterful in their overall arrangements. I can also hear a slight old school psychedelic pop touch to the music like old Cat Stevens. Music reminded me of a cross between Damien Rice, Ben Howard and classic Bob Dylan. This CD is quite entertaining overall with an amazing vocal front of McCloud who is a musical triple threat in my mind. He is a world class songwriter; he has an amazing voice and a likeable appeal (visually and vocally). His lyrical content is straight from the heart and offers a very strong and confident male perspective and spirit. No doubt many females will love him as well. All song do exactly what they are meant to do via well-crafted movements and top tiered musicianship. The overall production value is superb with a crystal clear sound quality.
Top Tracks: Flicker, King of New England, Pieces
Criticism: McCloud should put at least one “funny or light hearted” statement on his CD that goes against the grain of the rest of the material. I think this will keep people guessing, off center and speak to even more fans in the process.
Conclusion: Jared McCloud has proven herself again with this latest release. He is clearly an up and coming talent. All band members backing him up are clearly capable musicians. I must admit “To Live and Die in Your Arms” sucked me in like a powerful drug and refused to let go long after the music was over. This usually indicates he is something special about the artist or band in question. Thus deserving praise, recognition and musical fame at the international level.
– William Ball. Approved by Cyrus Rhodes.