Today’s first tune comes from Alpha Rev, an alternative rock band based in Austin, Texas. “Lonely Man” is featured on the band’s third album, Bloom, released in 2013. This song has a country feel, making it a little different than most Alpha Rev songs and the rest of the album, but it works well here. “Lonely Man” is a simple, yet painful story – a man describes his choices to put work ahead of his family, how those choices lead to the dissolution of his marriage, and how he’s living the life of a lonely man as a result. It’s almost a cautionary tale; it feels as though the man is sitting beside you at the bar and warning you, “Don’t make these mistakes unless you want to end up alone like me.”
Musically, what stands out the most to me are McPherson’s vocals. His emotions are so raw and present in this song, especially toward the end. He doesn’t simply tell the story, he feels every word of it. It sent a chill or two down my spine.
Kids are asking mama when daddy’s getting home / Mama’s getting angry, dinner’s cold on the stove / She gets the house, the kids, and the van / I get the life of a lonely man
I’ll leave you with an earlier version of “Lonely Man” that appears on Alpha Rev’s 2011 EP, City Farm: Roots.
Which version do you like best?