There may be a finer band on the planet, and there may be a finer songwriter, but if there is, I haven't heard it. Centro-matic are one of Will Johnson's outlets, where the rock is turned up to full Neil Young Crazy Horse, alongside the more contemplative, new-Americana, South San Gabriel and his beautiful solo work. This, the band's seventh album, may just be their best work, opening with the glorious Covered Up In Mines, and proceeding through songs that, at turns, display crunching fuzz rock, and then sweeping beauty. In fact, it is difficult not to use the word 'masterpiece' in any review. The core of the work is Will Johnson - his songs work so well on acoustic guitar that, worked up into full band versions, and accentuated with rock solid instrumentation and the great feeling of studio improvisation, they can't help but dig their way in, until repeated listening is not just desirable, but essential. Easily the best album of the year, so far.
Adult Contemporary Essentials
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