Steven R. Smith
Hala Strana's Steven R. Smith's latest solo album casts a huge shadow on the bulk of his previous work. Though wrought from the same broken soul blues mold that much of his work stems from, Owl has a unified foggy desolation that creeps like ice under the boot of Smith's lonesome guitar odes. I've long been impressed by Hala Strana, and Smith has worked alongside a number of great musicians from the Jeweled Antler ranks, but this outing sees him pour more of his being into every strained line and muted shuffle of strings than seems possible. Even at its most restrained Owl cuts like wet wind into the back of your neck, never letting you out of its grasp for a moment of warm comfortability, though as you adjust to the numbness that too becomes a kind of comfort; a constant that calms as much as it pricks.
[MP3] Steven R. Smith - Whistling
[MP3] Steven R. Smith - O, Blessed Night Your Sunrise Has Burnt Down
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