What does it sound like?:
Justin Townes Earle’s whole life has been played out in public, from his dysfunctional childhood, his tumultuous relationship with his father, Steve Earle, his abuse of alcohol and drugs to his development as a songwriter and performer of Americana. He is now thirty-five, clean, married and a soon-to-be father. This album, Kids In The Street, finds him looking back on his past with clear eyes, while still being rooted in a positive present. It smoulders with confidence.
He may have been looking for something different by leaving Nashville to record for the first time, shacking up in Mike Mogis’s studio in Nebraska, but, there, he has found his true self. Earle likes his Country pure, his rockabilly rollicking, his bass slapped and his horns Memphis. All of these are present and correct in spades. In addition, there are dirty blues, slow dance weepies, gutbucket r&b and blue collar rock. He even finds room for a murder ballad. For a man well known for his melancholy, the rockers are especially enjoyable, with spiky guitars, kicking drums and fun lyrics. These dozen songs are no longer budding with potential but blooming fully in an impressive bouquet. » Continue Reading.