Dion: Blues With Friends [Album Review]
Jun05

Dion: Blues With Friends [Album Review]

Dion Blues With FriendsKeeping The Blues Alive [2020] There are different levels of fame. There’s “one hit wonder” famous, and “once upon a time” famous, where you are remembered for your hits, and people flock around to remember when they were young. There’s that level of fame where the whole world knows you by just your first name, you know, Elvis, Bono, Cher, Madonna. Then, there’s that level of famous where you’re so beloved that...

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Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit: Reunions [Album Review]
May15

Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit: Reunions [Album Review]

Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit ReunionsSoutheastern Records [2020] In one of the songs on Jason Isbell’s seventh solo album since stepping away from the Drive-By Truckers, the singer sings again about his struggle to maintain his sobriety, “It gets easier, but it never gets easy.” He could just as easily be describing the work of creating transcendent music that lives up to the commercial and critical successes of his two previous...

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Lucinda Williams: Good Souls Better Angels [Album Review]
May05

Lucinda Williams: Good Souls Better Angels [Album Review]

Lucinda Williams Good Souls Better AngelsHighway 20/Thirty Tigers [2020] Lucinda Williams has a remarkable, ragged, resilient singing voice, that is the perfect instrument for her honest, world-weary songs. I’m often reminded when I hear her singing that it was to Williams that Elvis Costello turned to in 2004 to share vocals for his song “There’s A Story In Your Voice.” He was right about that. That same year, Flogging Molly turned...

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X: Alphabetland [Album Review]
Apr29

X: Alphabetland [Album Review]

X AlphabetlandFat Possum Records [2020] Of the bands that came out of the L.A. scene in the late 70’s and early 80’s, I tend to connect X with those bands that had a strong roots music connection that fueled their creativity. X arrived on the punk scene playing hard, fast sounds, sparked by the unique chemistry of singers Exene Cervenka and John Doe, the rockabilly influenced guitar playing of Billy Zoom, and the...

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Fiona Apple: Fetch The Bolt Cutters [Album Review]
Apr22

Fiona Apple: Fetch The Bolt Cutters [Album Review]

Fiona Apple Fetch The Bolt CuttersEpic Records [2020] The title of Fiona Apple’s fifth album is telling. Drawn from the British crime-drama “The Fall,” which featured Gillian Anderson as a detective who, discovering some shackles where a woman has been abused, cries out: Fetch The Bolt Cutters. Those words become a metaphor for an artist who won’t be put in chains, who will shake off the shackles of pop...

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Soul Asylum: Hurry Up And Wait [Album Review]
Apr17

Soul Asylum: Hurry Up And Wait [Album Review]

Soul Asylum Hurry Up And WaitBlue Élan Records [2020] Soul Asylum came of age in the early 80’s in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis/St. Paul playing the same clubs as Husker Du, The Replacements, The Suburbs, who all went on to sign major label record deals. Led by singer David Pirner and guitarist Dan Murphy, under the very appropriate early moniker of Loud Fast Rules, they had changed it to Soul Asylum by the time they recorded...

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