Good Light

Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors

Good Time Records, 2013

http://www.drewholcomb.com

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 06/22/2013

It shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that Drew Holcomb is from Tennessee. His breezy Americana, lean Southern rock moments, and acoustic folk songs certainly sound Nashville influenced, as they reside not far from gritty country rock. What's less apparent from listening to my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Good Light, his fifth album, is that Holcomb is much younger than his music leads you to believe – barely in his thirties – and his band includes his wife, who does back up vocals on a handful of tracks here.

Things start off with a duet between Holcomb and his better half Ellie, the bluesy “Another Man's Shoes.” Layered guitars and country-influenced melodies make it a memorable tune that could easily propel the band into the mainstream. Similar bluesy guitar work makes several appearances, as do organs and plenty of bar rock songs like the aptly titled “Tennessee.” The most fiery tune, “Nothing Like A Woman,” is barnyard rocker full of piano melodies and a tightly knit rhythm section.

However, the quaint acoustic songs are where Holcomb and company really shines. “Can't Take It With You” easily runs parallel with the impact of a hushed Ryan Adams tune, while “I Love You, I Do” is one the cutest alt-country love songs in recent history. “The Wine We Drink” is where Ellie's voice steals the show, her gentle, smooth pipes working so intimately well with the delicate finger picking of the guitar. The album exits with "Tomorrow," a languid and hazy blur of warm, comforting balladry.

If you're a TV fanatic, you may have already heard these songs. The universal and easily relatable tunes have already been featured on a number of shows and commercials. Listening to them all back-to-back reveals a direct timelessness both musically and lyrically, and when paired with the sharp songwriting, makes Good Light one of the best Americana albums of 2013.

Rating: A

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