jake xerxes fussell – good and green again

To construct ‘Good and Green Again,’ this superb North Carolina folklorist trawled through stories and songs of old, sewing the findings together with his laid-back voice at the seam. Fussell’s vocals pivot lightly off the story as well as the crisp acoustic arrangements behind him; he is an effective, cool narrator over a French horn or upright bass. While the slower pace of the middle section cools its emotional impact and contracts the music to merely being pleasant, there is enough weight to the compositions on GAGA to sustain its warmth of realised sentimentality. This is a contained, gratifying album bathed in the wonder of nutritious storytelling and serene instrumentation.

A favourite: ‘Carriebelle’

24/30

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