‘Brutal Dawn’ is the much anticipated second installment in a two album series from singer-songwriter Bernard Fanning and follows last year’s ARIA award winning ‘Civil Dusk’ (#2 ARIA Debut). Renewal, realisation, reconciliation and evolution are the ‘brutal’ answers to Civil Dusk’s lyricism, revision, tenderness and romance.
Fanning’s band The Black Fins give full force to songs that speak to the perils and benefits of deep reflection. Much of the same personnel from Civil Dusk create a dynamic record that has minimal instrumentation that reinforces the lyrics. Fanning and Nick DiDia’s La Cueva Recording in Byron Bay again provided the backdrop for this second installment in the series that was recorded through the summer of 2016/17.
This is an album that has been carefully realized but manages to stay free of artifice or contrivance. It is an adept answer to the questions posed on its predecessor and points to a way forward for an artist that is wholeheartedly dedicated to the craft of songwriting and presenting them in an album format.