艺 术 家：Hannah Aldridge
| 发行公司：Trodden Black Entertainment | 发行日期：2014年
The artwork of this Muscle Shoals, now residing in Nashville, singer/songwriter’s debut is black and white with blood red fonts. As such, it’s a perfect visual introduction to Aldridge’s self-described “dark Americana.” Fiery opener “You Ain’t Worth the Fight” sets the tone with its take-no-crap-from-a-bad-old-boyfriend lyrics and a soulful yet relentless swamp rock punch that reaches out, grabs hold of your ears and won’t let go. Aldridge is all attitude but never lets her arrogance get in the way of terrific songs that simmer and boil. Sharp, tough and immediate playing by her rugged band, led by guitarist Andrew Sovine, builds the tension of tunes such as the menacing “Strand of Pearls.” A surprising yet perfectly placed bowed saw section helps establish the mood too.
Aldridge takes the first person of an inmate on death row in “Parchman,” and makes us sympathize with the killer’s plight in a slow, sizzling track that tightens its grip as it heads into a creepy lap steel solo. Aldridge’s vocal balances resentment and restrained anger and when the band kicks into “Howlin’ Bones” her mix of backwoods country twang and tough rocker pushes the song into the red, even before Sovine’s edgy guitar drives it over the edge.
She borrows fellow Muscle Shoals native Jason Isbell’s band for a cover of his “Try,” the album’s only non-original, and it’s another chugging, uncompromising highlight that’s as much Led Zeppelin as Drive-By Truckers. A few acoustic driven ballads close out the disc, including an unplugged reprise of the title track. Both are just as taut, if slightly less dramatic, and round out a stunning, often intense set that’s in the running for best Americana debut this year.
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