12 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Over the years, outlaw country cult hero Ray Wylie Hubbard pared down his approach, gaining more musical and poetic power in the process. This proved more evident than ever on 2012's The Grifter's Hymnal. With a minimalist's arsenal of primal blues riffs and a sunbaked Texas growl, he delivers songs full of black humor, striking poetic imagery, and a Zen-informed spiritual sensibility. But Hubbard remains resolutely grounded in earthy antics. "Mother Blues" wryly tells how he met his wife in his early days of gigging, and in the midst of the setting the satanic scene on "New Year's Eve at the Gates of Hell," he finds time to castigate his former label boss by name.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Over the years, outlaw country cult hero Ray Wylie Hubbard pared down his approach, gaining more musical and poetic power in the process. This proved more evident than ever on 2012's The Grifter's Hymnal. With a minimalist's arsenal of primal blues riffs and a sunbaked Texas growl, he delivers songs full of black humor, striking poetic imagery, and a Zen-informed spiritual sensibility. But Hubbard remains resolutely grounded in earthy antics. "Mother Blues" wryly tells how he met his wife in his early days of gigging, and in the midst of the setting the satanic scene on "New Year's Eve at the Gates of Hell," he finds time to castigate his former label boss by name.

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