Jackleg Devotional to the Heart
The Denton, Texas–based Baptist Generals haven't been in any hurry to build their catalog. Jackleg Devotional to the Heart is the follow-up to 2003's No Silver/No Gold, so it was 10 years coming. Songwriter Chris Flemmons thought he had the album sewn up in 2005, only to trash the results and start over. His bandmates had been busy contributing to the works of Mind Spiders, St. Vincent, and The War on Drugs, and when the time was deemed right, they wandered into the studio with producer Stuart Sikes (Modest Mouse, White Stripes) to help finish off the tracks for an album that seemed like a pipedream. The touches of orchestration heard in spots ("Oblivion Overture") add to the album's color. But it's still Flemmons' show, and it's his voice and guitar that guides "Turnunders and Overpasses" and "Morning of My Life." The full band driving "Dog That Bit You" is smart and psychedelic, in sync with Flemmons' Roky Erickson–style bark.