Beans on Toast – A Bird in the Hand
More mature and introspective, A Bird in the Hand is a simple recipe of folk songs and wholesome lyrics to help stave off the cynicism of an increasingly alienating modern world
Jay McAllister (aka Beans on Toast) continues his decade-long tradition of releasing an album on the same date each year with the release of A Bird in the Hand, the tenth studio album from the British folk artist. As well as celebrating ten years of making and releasing music, the album also marks a shift in McAllister’s perspective as he becomes a new father. Taken from the proverb, 'A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush', McAllister’s latest album is about learning to appreciate what you already have.
In tracks such as Magic, about the birth of his daughter, instrumentals give colour to the tales McAllister expertly spins, like the tentative chime of the piano to mimic the faint sound of a newborn’s heartbeat. The album has a good sense of chronology as they journey to the hospital to deliver his daughter, before moving on to talk about the staff, from the kitchen porters to the surgeons, in an ode to the NHS on Here at Homerton Hospital.
Despite growing older and more cynical, in tracks such as Alexa and Bamboo Toothbrush, McAllister makes light of, and even embraces, the tech-centered world he rails against. Despite the air of tongue-in-cheek cynicism, the songwriter acknowledges that there is much to celebrate in the little things in life. More mature and introspective, A Bird in the Hand is a simple recipe of folk songs and wholesome lyrics to help stave off the cynicism of an increasingly alienating modern world.
Listen to: Another Year, Alexa, Magic