Ashley Park

Canadian musician/songwriter/singer Terry Miles has released a curious collection of songs under the guise of Ashley Park. The American Scene features hymn-like songs of elusive love ("Around the World,” “Return to Me"), busy, jazz-influenced numbers ("The Last Train Home") and even a nice cover of “Tell Me Why,” by Neil Young (doesn’t he pop up a lot these days?), culled from After the Gold Rush. Miles’ own lyrics are somewhat opaque. On the title cut, in a voice somewhere between Roger Waters and John Lennon, he sadly croons “In prep school, a case where you practiced your heart/In the golden moments of youth/It’s the only life that you know.” It’s not exactly clear what’s going on here (or what went on) … possibly spontaneity lost. Most of Miles’ songs seem highly personal, weighted with vague references reaching for even vaguer conclusions. However, there is a certain degree of enjoyment to be gained from puzzling out just what he’s on about. Regardless, there’s no faulting the melodies and arrangements. All 15 cuts are notable for their effective instrumentation and crisp, clear sound. Worth a listen. Ashley Park appears locally at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 1, at Moxie’s.