Lance Canales: The Blessing and the Curse (Music Road/Southbound)

 |   |  <1 min read

Lance Canales: Sing No More
Lance Canales: The Blessing and the Curse (Music Road/Southbound)

In these dreadful days when we see desperate migrants on the nightly news and a US presidential candidate says he'd build a wall along the Mexican border, Lance Canales' raw version of Woody Guthrie's Deportee here (“We died in your hills, we died in your deserts . . . some of us are illegal and some are not wanted”) has a powerful resonance.

Especially as he names the Mexican victims of the plane crash which prompted Guthrie.

Canale's gravelly delivery, his roughed-up roots approach on these folk-blues songs of desperation, injustice and hard times, and the power of his storytelling make for compelling listening.

With a small band and some stellar guests (Jimmy LaFave, Eliza Gilkyson), Canales from California comes off like an angry Dustbowl version of Tom Waits who won't let wrongs go unchallenged.

He brings old blues like Rev. Gary Davis' Death Don't Have No Mercy into the indifferent 21st century.

His earthy originals are equal to those of his inspirations (the menacing Hich-Wyah Man, the timeless moan of Cold Dark Hole) and these 13 songs contain powerful truths about death and life, the latter a blessing and curse.

Share It

Your Comments

Jamie - Sep 8, 2015

Wow ... love it

jeff - Sep 8, 2015


that would be the most hauntingly emotional version I have ever heard of that song..stunning

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Joan Osborne: Pretty Little Stranger (Shock)

Joan Osborne: Pretty Little Stranger (Shock)

While going through some papers last week I came on the interview I had done with Joan Osborne in smalltown Vermont as she was riding the crest of her unexpected radio hit that went, "what if... > Read more

The De Sotos: Cross Your Heart (Ode)

The De Sotos: Cross Your Heart (Ode)

If CDs are dead as we keep being told you do wonder why people not only keep making them, but also why record companies put so much effort into their expensive packaging -- like this from an... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Nik Bartsch's Ronin: Live (ECM/Ode)

Nik Bartsch's Ronin: Live (ECM/Ode)

A previous album by this often melodically minimalist, rhythmically propulsive and effervescent group around keyboard player Bartsch -- Llyria -- was singled out as one the Best of Elsewhere in... > Read more

Chris Bell: You and Your Sister (acoustic version, 1975)

Chris Bell: You and Your Sister (acoustic version, 1975)

The story of Big Star -- post-Beatles pop band in the Seventies like Badfinger and, like Badfinger, largely overlooked or dismissed as unfashionable at the time -- has been previously told at... > Read more