Langhorne Slim — Be Set Free. 9/29, Kemado Records.
I can’t believe I haven’t written about this album before, but: man, what a fucking great album. It’s hard for me to put words down about Langhorne, because on the surface — guy with a guitar, writing stripped down twangy songs about love, life, and women — he’s just another Americana singer-songwriter doin’ his thing. But he manages to write songs that hit right at my heart — “Diamonds and Gold” from the self-titled, “Boots Boy” and “Back to the Wild” from this album — and he puts on one of the best live shows I’ve ever seen. He’s got a voice that teeters between plaintive and mournful and a fantastic ear for a devastating line, like “Back to the Wild”‘s and i don’t wanna break your heart but i probably will.
This album is no different that his earlier stuff, especially 2008’s self-titled disc — it’s 13 tracks of beyond-solid songwriting, including a few killers, and I’m thrilled that he’s finally recorded live favorite “Nobody But You” (under the new title “Boots Boy”) — except that it’s a bigger sound than his previous stuff, with piano and soaring strings joining his guitar and the bass/drums of the War Eagles. It’s just really quietly, understatedly a completely amazing album.
[Langhorne Slim — “I Love You, But Goodbye”] 8MB, .mp3.
And check out this kick-ass interview with Slim while you’re at it.
Unrelatedly, sometimes Scott Bourne drives me nuts, but this list of 10 Ways To Improve Your Photography Without Buying Gear is really excellent. I do okay at most of the things on that list, though I could certainly work on #4 and #9; I am not great, but getting better, about being ruthless with my own work. But I know I’m not great at it — I’m working hard (#6) and trying to find some consistency (#7) in how I’m objective about my work.
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