jon langford Four Lost Souls (CD, £12.50)label: bloodshot
Carted off to Muscle Shoals, Alabama under the cloud of dark politics, Welsh-born, Chicago-based punk-rocker-turned-Americana musical icon and revered visual artist Jon Langford and a band of alchemists and merry-makers filed into NuttHouse studio, a one-story former bank building in Sheffield, AL, the day after the 2016 election and four days later emerged with Four Lost Souls. It's an album of pure Americana - not just because of where it was recorded, or that many of its players helped put Muscle Shoals on the musical map, but because it is beyond the news of the day. It is a travelogue of sorts, crossing musical generations and racial lines and the invisible barrier separating the flatlands of the upper Midwest and the rolling hills of the deepest south, and even somehow evaporating the ocean between the delta and the dingy port city of Newport, South Wales where Jon Langford was born. It goes to a place where the differences between country, soul, blues, and rock and roll are blown aside by the warm, languid breezes. The music has no time for such petty details because in the moment, in that place, was the sound of sweet agreement.
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