When Portland, Ore. via New York City troubadour Casey Neill sings, stories tumble out – some tales arc around friendship, others roam through America’s lost memories. If you’re a fan of the Bottle Rockets, Bruce Springsteen’s Nebraska or Bruce Cockburn, then Brooklyn Bridge is the hot cup of spiked tea you need.

Several cuts, including the country-rocking title track, John Doe-ish roots rocker “We Are the City” and the Pogues-like history lesson “The Holy Land” communicate Neill’s recollections and thoughts on the Big Apple, furnishing the East River environs the kind of mythic persona Van Morrison has given Irish landscapes.

Other tunes project Neill’s everyman outlook, a reflective mixing of Steve Earle and Joe Strummer perspectives, particularly on slow burning “Colville Blues” and dark and doleful “Throw Me To the Dogs.” Like Earle, Neill occasionally exceeds his ambition, but mostly Neill stays on par with his antecedents’ musically interwoven efforts.

Grade: B

Brooklyn Bridge is currently available.