Wednesday, November 23, 2016


Here's our beloved gang, sounding relaxed and upbeat to lead off their latest, and still with no signs of slowing down or losing a step even.  This time out, for much of the album, certainly the start, the acoustic campfire sound is back, a bit of the old 5 Days In May, plus some punchier numbers.  Mostly it's a feel-good offering.

That means Greg Keelor shifts away from his more experimental side, and he sets the mood with opener Hard To Remember, a cheery-sounding romp with Byrds echoes, organ, a sweet lead guitar solo, and lots of mandolin. That mandolin is back in the fore on the next cut, even taking the big centerpiece solo, on one of Jim Cuddy's happy country-flavoured pieces called I Can't Hide This Anymore, where he hits those heart-tugging high notes. Keelor's Rabbit's Foot has Dylan verses but on pep pills, and a nifty chorus. 

The group does lay back a bit in the second half, where we get the moody mystery of Keelor's Dust To Gold, with a western feel, or his Mascara Tears, a bittersweet electric piano, organ and pedal steel ballad.  Cuddy brings it back up with a uptempo fun rocker called Superstar.  It's a lark about the modern state of the musician:  "Start a business, organics door-to-door/because nobody here buys records anymore."  Maybe not in the numbers they once enjoyed, but that's not Blue Rodeo's fault, a group that continues to keep up the good work.

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