The Confluence

This 11-track first volley from debutant folkster David Berkeley shows a talent in its genesis.

This 11-track first volley from debutant folkster David Berkeley shows a talent in its genesis. The songs are inviting and nicely crafted, the musicianship is proficient, and all the right sensibilities seem to be in place. While rising above that middle tier of folk singer/ songwriters who are difficult to distinguish one from another, Berkeley is still a touch shy of knocking out those quiet and mighty hymns that mark the best of the folk genre. His melodies are fresh and sweet though not quite unforgettable. His lyrics, often captivating (as on "The City of the Second Hand"), are also a tad trite at times ("Waters whisper out my name.") That said, one can't deny the dramatic punch of "Drowning," the fretboard finesse of "Miss Maybe," or the lilting appeal of "A Moon Song." Berkeley could well have what it takes to win a wide audience. But his better moments on The Confluence suggest that first he may need to forget everything he has learned and trust his gut for a while. Contact 917-273-1497.—AZ