Eb & Sparrow: Sun/Son (Deadbeat/Southbound)

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Eb & Sparrow: Loaded Gun
Eb & Sparrow: Sun/Son (Deadbeat/Southbound)

After three excellent EPs, an excellent self-titled debut album and opening for Pokey LaFarge, Beth Orton and others, this Wellington-based five-piece around singer-songwriter Ebony Lamb have ensured a receptive audience for this world-class follow-up.

It dripps with alt.country languor (think kd lang or Chris Isaak at their most sleepy), spaghetti Western desperation-cum-twang (the cinematic sweep of Coward Son with Mexican trumnpet), classic country-folk (nods to Johnny, Bonnie and Emmylou), Tex-Mex and more.

There's a similar sense of hushed understatement of the kind the Cowboy Junkies sometimes explored (Kimbolton, Mighty Wind), and I Want You has the spaciousness of Ry Cooder's best soundtracks (courtesy of Bryn Heveldt's lap steel).

But Lamb conjures up spook-spirits and menace too.

Diverse but coherent.

Recommended.

Ebony Lamb answers our Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire here.


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