12 Songs, 47 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

With legendary producer Lloyd Maines once again at the board, and with songs written on the road, Robert Earl Keen has come up with one of his best albums to date. The re-recording of “Paint the Town Beige,” a song that originally appeared on his 1993 breakthrough release, Bigger Piece of Sky, is purebred country, where it once sounded closer to folk. Todd Snider’s humorous and touching “Play a Train Song” is done so well it becomes one of Keen’s own. William M. Golden’s “Soul of Man” (a traditional performed by Hank Williams, Johnny Cash and Ricky Scaggs, among the many) is properly forlorn. For the rest, it’s all Keen, including “Lay Down My Brother,” a track that sounds like its own modern traditional. The title track throws together a feel-good groove that’s halfway to Jimmy Buffett. “I Gotta Go” is a breezy country tune with a twisted tale. There’s real venom riding atop the easeful country flow of “The Road Goes On and On.” “Who Do Man” kicks up a more playful kind of trouble.

EDITORS’ NOTES

With legendary producer Lloyd Maines once again at the board, and with songs written on the road, Robert Earl Keen has come up with one of his best albums to date. The re-recording of “Paint the Town Beige,” a song that originally appeared on his 1993 breakthrough release, Bigger Piece of Sky, is purebred country, where it once sounded closer to folk. Todd Snider’s humorous and touching “Play a Train Song” is done so well it becomes one of Keen’s own. William M. Golden’s “Soul of Man” (a traditional performed by Hank Williams, Johnny Cash and Ricky Scaggs, among the many) is properly forlorn. For the rest, it’s all Keen, including “Lay Down My Brother,” a track that sounds like its own modern traditional. The title track throws together a feel-good groove that’s halfway to Jimmy Buffett. “I Gotta Go” is a breezy country tune with a twisted tale. There’s real venom riding atop the easeful country flow of “The Road Goes On and On.” “Who Do Man” kicks up a more playful kind of trouble.

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