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Following a pair of fairly ordinary contemporary singer/songwriter albums released on his own dime, Nashville-based singer/songwriter Dave Barnes signed with the small but respected indie Razor & Tie and released 2008's unexpected genre shift Me and You and the World. From the spirited opening track "Brothers & Sisters" onward, Barnes appears to have been listening to a nearly nonstop diet of '70s California rockers: echoes of Jackson Browne, Andrew Gold, Fleetwood Mac, the Eagles, and pretty much everyone who ever recorded for Asylum Records percolate through the glossy old-school pop of these 12 mellow tunes. Even the two songs re-recorded from Barnes' earlier D.I.Y. albums, the haunting piano ballad "On a Night Like This" and first single "Until You," share in this new Laurel Canyon mindset -- to good effect -- and the stylistic experiments also fit the time and place evoked. (For example, the gospel-infused "Carry Me Through" is strongly reminiscent of similar tunes by Paul Simon or James Taylor.) Tuneful, inventive, and unfailingly catchy, Me and You and the World is the sound of an artist reaching back to the past to find his voice.