This is an album that caught me by surprise. Frankly, the singer/songwriter genre is one that has become boring beyond belief. That is why the debut album by Irish-born Fionn Regan sticks out so nicely. The End Of History was originally released in Europe in 2006. Surprisingly the album was picked up for release in the States by the country label, Lost Highway. While the album does not possess many country elements, the label should be commended for recognizing the strengths of The End Of History and taking a chance.
Fionn Regan instantly brings to mind troubadours like Nick Drake and Elliott Smith as well as modern luminaries like Damien Rice and Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes. Fortunately, Regan leaves behind the dramatic and overblown nature of his peers. Regan simply focuses on writing good songs. Most of Regan’s songs bare only his understated vocals and simple guitar picking. The intimacy of his songs is certainly not fake. Much of The End Of History was recorded in an abandoned stone barn. Lyrically and vocally I am reminded on several occasions of John K. Samson of The Weakerthans. That is a high compliment but one I feel is deserved.
The End Of History is a striking debut to say the least. Fionn Regan may be a name everyone knows one day. For now though, Regan is a young, promising talent that has the world before him. Which way he will go no one knows.
RIYL: Bright Eyes, Nick Drake, Elliott Smith