by Warren Buchholz –
Don’t expect any poppy tunes that make your head dance. These songs have motive. They’re methodical. They take their time to set up and instill a forceful yet insightful presence. They exist for a reason. These songs represent a lifetime of being in the industry, and they tell a story of falling in love, breaking up, and finding a way to continue. This story not only represents the romantic relationship, but it also represents the disappointment of the struggling music industry and how it affects people like Keith, which ain’t got nothing on him.
Richards’ voice has changed over time, becoming hardened and roughed through years of living, but it works here. This package is gritty and imperfect—plucked with delicious early blues and raw rock n’ roll that takes us back to Buddy Holly and Leadbelly—that unfold surprisingly well, like developing a can of 35mm film. This is analogue photography in a digital world, and it proves the two can co-exist and, hopefully, we will see a resurgence of soulful music within the popular music industry. It’s a long shot, since the industry thrives on finding things that make them money, and for some reason, staying true to yourself does not make money. Hopefully this album can prove everyone wrong, and we will see the resurrection of rock n’ roll. If not, we always have independent artists that rock our worlds.
Side note: I was giddy when I heard Norah Jones pop up in “Illusion”. Her style of jazz along with her powerful voice complimented the song as well as the album. It was a needed injection of stylistic momentum that allows the rest of the album to propel forward to its conclusion.
If anything comes from this album, remember to love what you have and let it go if you feel it’s the right thing to do. Love is fluid and ever-changing, and there is more than one person out there in the world for everyone. Love what you do and love the ones around you. Good things will come back to you.
Listening Pleasure: Nothing on Me, Goodnight Irene, Heartstopper, Trouble, Love Overdue, Illusion