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Poor David’s Almanack — ‘tasteful antiquarianism’

Poor David’s Almanack — ‘tasteful antiquarianism’

August 12
14:54 2017

David Rawlings

Poor David’s Almanack

(Acony Records)

Poor David’s Almanack finds David Rawlings, rated as one of the most able guitarists in US roots music, parlaying his skills into tasteful antiquarianism.

“Midnight Train” is an old-fashioned country jaunt down the railroad, with Rawlings’ longstanding musical partner Gillian Welch on backing vocals, while “Lindsey Button” is a slow folk spiritual in which Rawlings and Welch chorus the words “Long time ago” with heartfelt relish.

“Cumberland Gap” pays homage to Neil Young (Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s “Ohio”, to be precise), but Rawlings does not share his hero’s bolder approach to Americana. He prefers to sidle his way into traditions unobtrusively, as on album highlight “Yup”, a sly exercise in gothic country-blues.

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