Dreams of Modern Living, the new solo album from singer/songwriter Jefferson Berry, is an opportunity to take a moment and appreciate the noble role of the songwriter in contemporary society. Berry takes on issues, realities, and possibilities of the day and explores them in thoughtful ways, all the while capturing their essence within perfect acoustic frameworks. When he sings, “You don’t have to fight, but you can never quit,” Berry is reminding us that, like it or not, reality is reality. But by focusing our gaze on the various subjects, he fulfills the artist’s heroic and hopeful obligation. These story songs are a cultural compass, each tracking a needle guiding us toward an eventually improved outcome.
The album was produced by Jefferson Berry, with Matt Muir engineering at Retro City Studios in Germantown. Chris Muth of Taloowa Studios mastered it. For a solo event, it delivers an intricate and lively musical soundscape. The effect is as if Berry is inhabiting your dreams and revealing details perhaps previously overlooked, but essential to any understanding of that world. Bravo.