Train Home


aec.hig8158.2 7/22/03 New

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ID: aec.hig8158.2


    Train Home Shout! Records

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Review Text Chris Smither settles into his distinctive combination of folk and blues with this excellent release. Although not pushing established boundaries, his rich, velvety voice and mature spoken-sung vocals convey a sense of truth and add depth to these introspective compositions. A bit of early Tom Waits creeps into his leathery vocals on a jaunty cover of Dave Carter's "Crocodile Man," but Smither is best defined by the fingerpicked folk-blues. Bonnie Raitt, a fan from way back, contributes harmony vocals and slide guitar to his gentle eight-minute version of Dylan's "Desolation Row." Some tunes are percussion-free, providing the singer's honey growl of a voice and clean acoustic guitar the most space to maneuver. Smither is loosest lamenting about his stolen car and its psychological effects on "Let It Go," a track that, with his muttering and grouching, seems to have been recorded in an impromptu moment. A gentle cover of Mississippi John Hurt's "Candy Man" -- the album's only unaccompanied performance -- shows Smither's rather evident roots, and his closing waltz-styled version of Buffalo Springfield's "Kind Woman" reveals less obvious ones. Accompaniment by right-hand man David "Goody" Goodrich, who plays keyboards, guitars, and even something called a pinewood diddley bo, subtly enhances nearly every track on this quiet gem. ~ Hal Horowitz

Track Listing

CD: 1

  1. 1. Train Home - 4:13
  2. 2. Outside In - 4:12
  3. 3. Confirmation - 4:06
  4. 4. Crocodile Man - 4:34
  5. 5. Lola - 3:27
  6. 6. Desolation Row - 8:46
  7. 7. Call Time - 4:36
  8. 8. Candy Man - 4:37
  9. 9. Never Needed It More - 3:17
  10. 10. Let It Go - 5:33
  11. 11. Kind Woman - 4:51

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