Till the Sun Turns Black (Bonus Track Version)
Maine songwriter Ray LaMontagne's follow-up to his surprise 2004 hit album Trouble is an even quieter meditation. Again teaming with producer Ethan Johns, the duo approach things with the expected naturalist touch: acoustic guitars, gentle strings, quiet brushes sweeping the drums and a romantic daze over everything. Reminiscentof Cat Stevens in his calm solemnity, and Van Morrison in his husky tone, LaMontagne settles here for fewer vocal sprints, preferring mostly to whisper softly and let things resolveon their own. It's music that makes no attempt to reach out, but rather drawsyou in. The listener muststrain to hear the intimate conversation. The opening six minutes of "Be HereNow" set an ethereal vibethat is slightly augmented throughout the album mostly with tastefully applied strings. "Barfly" dissipates in the air, words collapsing in the heat of emotional intensity. "Three More Days" is virtually an all-out attack by comparison, a three-chord blues that builds to nearly a shout. LaMontagne is an old-fashioned guy, recording as if the three decades separating him from the early '70s milieu he evokes neverhappened, making Till the Sun Turns Black ananachronistic gem.