Elsewhere by Graham Reid

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Wide angle reviews, interviews and opinion by writer Graham Reid

Chris Robinson Brotherhood: Big Moon Ritual (Warners)

Chris Robinson Brotherhood: 100 Days of Rain
Chris Robinson Brotherhood: Big Moon Ritual (Warners)

Robinson is frontman for the Black Crowes, the band which married the Allman Brothers' soulful Southern rock with a stoner take on the shambling Faces but more recently slid into post-Band country-rock with their excellent Before the Frost recorded live in the late Levon Helm's studio.

Robinson's solo albums have been of no fixed focus but drew on Americana, rock and country and songs often tripped-out at length. Which means this -- with yet another band – wouldn't surprise longtime followers: nothing is shorter than seven minutes and the opener Tulsa Yesterday clocks in at a yawning 12.

This is mostly languid, prog-country rock – the cover is like a Yes album – but for every meandering piece there's another to catch your breath, notably the exceptional, nine minute-plus Star or Stone which has the weariness of Dylan's I Shall be Released or the Stones' Wild Horses with cryptic lyrics about prophecy and dying, or the equally slow, possibly autobiographical 100 Days of Rain.

With guitarist Neal Casal (Ryan Adams' Cardinals) and electric keyboard player Adam MacDougall providing drifting accompaniment, Robinson occasionally delivers something special.

But mostly this is for an audience which is horizontal.

Or soon will be.

Like the sound of this? Then check out this.

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