Building off of the swells started on You Become The Mountain and Torii Gates, Jeffrey Silverstein’s second LP splits its weight between the sunlight splendor of country instrumentals soaked in Western warmth and the roughshod sighs of a roadworn troubadour. The former has been fermenting for sometime — with Silverstein slipping into the arms of ambient country’s embrace in his previous works, slowing the pace down to warm syrup strums paired with Barry Walker’s (Rose City Band, Mouth Painter) glowing slide work. This time around he puts a pause on the mechanical nod of drum machine saunter that’s permeated his past recordings, harnessing a slippery choogle with Dana Buoy (Akron/Family) behind the kit and longtime foil Alex Chapmen on bass.
Silverstein continues to sling twang with the painterly grace of brush against canvas and the new set of songs open up purple-skied vistas that were only hinted at on his early works. Guest spots from William Tyler and Karina Walker compliment Western Sky Music‘s ranchhand ramble in rotoscope, sending the listener into slow-motion spells of color and light. The other side of the dynamic winds up more surprising, with Silverstein introducing several vocal tracks, slipping on a proper Callahan-grade grit and divining the dented soul of mid-life comfort and calm. Nestling one foot in the denim n’ dust of kindred soul Bobby Lee’s ambient amble and another in the untucked tao of Silver Jews, Silverstein’s found a balance that suits him, netting a record that’s his most nuanced and necessary yet.
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