The ghosts of an Old Weird America hover in the atmosphere above STEVE GUNN’s achingly beautiful album, Way Out Weather. From the sustained spectral guitar slides and the groping in the dark piano figures that start the opening track, it’s clear this is a record that’s all about the search.
For exactly what is always the harder question and I don’t think it’s necessarily one that has to be worked out right away (for either the artist or the listener). Sometimes the answers lie in the journey. In this case, Mr. Gunn takes us on a hell-of-a trip down the dusty back roads and wide-open spaces of landscapes both real and inner. It’s clear there are definitely some wrong turns that end up pointing down some blind alleys and gin palaces along the way. “Your faith is savage and your mind is damaged. You’re more than halfway there.” Gunn intones on the hook that’s “Milly’s Garden,” one of the album’s catchiest tracks. It’s obvious there’s also some spirit guides helping along the way. I’d bet that John Fahey is one of those. I mean, dig those mantric guitar figures and the searing, acidic electric guitar leads of “Wildwood,” and the gorgeous acoustic picking of “Shadow Bros.” His influence is clearly felt. A shades-wearing 1968-era Dylan is definitely in there too. Get a load of the stunning album closer, “Tommy’s Congo,” to get an idea of what I’m talking about.
Way Out Weather is an album that takes these elemental sounds and channels them into something timeless and at the same time fresh. It’s never an easy task to channel both the past and the present; bending and shaping them into music that’s well fitted for the roads yet to travel.
Genre/ Tags: Folk Rock, Alt-Country, Singer/ Songwriter
Way Out Weather LP: Tracklist:
1.) Way Out Weather
3.) Milly’s Garden
4.) Shadow Bros
8.) Tommy’s Congo