Kelowna, B.C.'s Cary Pratt (a.k.a. Prairie Cat) has been injured by one or more failed relationships, and he's either convinced we'd be interested in the details or he has decided to use this album for catharsis.
Whichever the case, this smorgasbord of injury — punctuated by titles like "Given Up," "Never Right," "Won't Change" and "We Tried" — works. If Pratt had changed his singing to spoken word, this would nearly be an Arab Strap album (minus the filth).
Although he's cordial, Pratt is a rather frank lyricist — a quality that steers this album clear of the timid territory inhabited by the likes of ivory-ticklers Andrew Rodriguez and Royal Wood. There's no shortage of piano and strings on It Began/Ended With Sparks, but Pratt also has a way with brass and bouncing drums, putting his aesthetic on par with Toronto's Zeus.
By disc's end, you'll find you most remember "Sun Away," where Pratt complains about an upstairs party that goes until sunrise. He added a mock soundbite of said party, muffled by the supposed distance between it and him, which sounded so real I had to remove my headphones to see if it was happening in my apartment.