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LANGHORNE SLIM —LOST AT LAST VOL.1 (Dualtone Records)

 

Langhorne Slim is one of those artists who, live, is a captivating performer. To capture this on disc is a difficult task, and though on first listen I felt this was potently true, my stance has since softened. He is good on disc too! Whether as good as live, I would need to deliberate more on Lost At Long Last, Vol 1 (his sixth full-length release) as folk, some of a contemporary edge mixed with hints of pop and old time music sees Slim cast a wide, and ever intriguing net. Amidst it all, Nashville-based Slim offers more than just traces of the authentic 1960s folk singer-songwriter troubadour in his work. Beautiful it is too.

 

From the simple melodies and picking of the opening track “Life Is Confusing” etc to the mandolin, guitar and harmony vocals (female) warmed “Old Things” to jaunty as the first glance of spring, ragtime slanted “House Of My Soul (You Light The Rooms)”, and an off-kilter “Ocean City” (for may, Jack & brother Jon) Slim lights up the mind, and warms the soul of the listener. In a rather unique fashion he does it too. Recorded in around six month; in locations as diverse as New Orleans, Los Angeles and the Catskill, NY Slim, as he toured, mainly solo from the sound of things he dipped deep into his subconscious for the material. Three of which are co-writes with his friend, and one of Slim’s co-producers on the record, Kenny Siegal. Band member, Malachi DeLorenzo likewise shares the load, and from the point of the sound they nail it perfectly.  

 

One of my favourite tracks is the all too short “Bluebird”, mixed with old timey traits it burns it up. A great dance tune if ever there was. “Funny Feeling” is a co-write with Junior Kimbrough, and it is dedicated to him and Ted Hawkins (and is no more than okay). Finer and hugely interesting is “Zombie”, a fascinating affair if introduces sounds of 1960s pop as it bursts forth. Bit of a show stopper live with a band no doubt, since there is a bunch of harmonies and swirling accompaniment (pedal steel guitar etc). It comes prior to him reverting to a more intimate sound on “Lost this Time”, this as he speaks of how he can’t be the man he wants to be (nice guitar, harmony vocals and organ). Rounding off the album, Slim comes up with a spare, simple sounding ode “Better Man”. This as he reflects on life and of wanting to be a better man, and told by his mother to simply do the best you can!    

                                                                                                       Maurice Hope 

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May 2018

1
John Prine
67 pts.
The Tree of Forgiveness
Oh Boy Records
JJC,MB,SP,RM
2
Levi Parham
58 pts.
It's All Good
Continental Records
CRS,JB,TK
3
Jeb Barry and the Pawn Shop Saints
55 pts.
Texas, etc...
DollyRocker
HDB,CVL,DHO
4
Michael McDermott
54 pts.
Out From Under
Continental Song City
JDO,LK,BK
5
Sam Morrow
48 pts.
Concrete and Mud
Forty Below Records
MA,JBO,HB
6
Caleb Caudle
39 pts.
Crushed Coins
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
7
Western Centuries
36 pts.
Songs From The Deluge
Free Dirt Records
MF
8
Carter Sampson
34 pts.
Lucky
Continental Song City
 
9
Charley Crockett
30 pts.
Lonesome as a Shadow
Son of Davy/30 Tigers
 
10
Courtney Marie Andrews
28 pts.
May Your Kindness Remain
Loose Music
JV
11
Ed Romanoff
27 pts.
The Orphan King
Pinerock Records
 
 
Joan Baez
27 pts.
Whistle Down The Wind
Proper Records
HD
 
Pharis and Jason Romero
27 pts.
Sweet Old Religion
Lula Records
SZ,LM
14
Gretchen Peters
24 pts.
Dancing With The Beast
Proper Records
KG
 
Old Crow Medicine Show
24 pts.
Volunteer
Columbia Records
GF
 
Will Stewart
24 pts.
County Seat
Cornelius Chapel Records
 
17
Ben Reel
22 pts.
Land Of Escape
B REEL Records
GC,FC
 
Birds Of Chicago
22 pts.
Love In Wartime
Signature Sounds
 
 
Emily Herring
22 pts.
Gliding
Eight 30 Records
RST,RH
20
Jenny van West
21 pts.
Happiness To Burn
Independent
PJ,FS,JJ
 
Mary Gauthier
21 pts.
Rifles And Rosary Beads
In the Black Records
 
22
Sarah Shook & The Disarmers
20 pts.
Years
Bloodshot Records
FCE
23
David Starr
19 pts.
South And East
Independent
HM
24
Cold Tone Harvest
18 pts.
After You
Independent
 
25
Grant Peeples
17 pts.
Settling Scores vol. 2
Continental

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