Sun Volt’s Notes of Blues – A Review by Keefer

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On past albums Son Volt has included the occasional blues tune. On the new one, the band is all in. But it’s not a traditional blues album, this isn’t the typical twelve bar blues with horns, etc. Think less BB King and more Mississippi Fred McDowell and Skip James, men whose music were polyrythmic, featuring minor key tuning, and slide guitar.  Just check out Cherokee St. and The Storm.  The ghost of Nick Drake’s finger picking style shows up on album opener Promise The World which Jay Farrar cites as having the same alternate tunings as Drake’s 1972 classic Pink Moon. The stand out on the record is Back Against The Wall. Notes Farrar in a Rolling Stone piece, “I wake up everyday, read the news, and then ask myself, ‘What would Woody Guthrie say about these current times?’

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