Music Reviews

Gillian Welch

Time (The Revelator)

Acony

Gillian Welch and partner David Rawlings have been the buzz in roots music circles for some time now, and with their appearance on the O Brother Where Art Thou and Down From the Mountain soundtracks, they are becoming more and more visible. Time, their third album, continues the sparse, quiet sound of 1996’s Revival and Hell Among the Yearlings from 1998. So sparse, in fact, that moments of this record make you think that you’re listening to demos, not final songs. While it is easy to imagine adding another guitar here, a fiddle there, the end result of such tampering wouldn’t make the songs any better, just louder. What the record sounds like is two people seated in folding chairs, heads close together, playing music. Which is most likely what it is. Some moments are uptempo (in a fashion) such as “Red Clay Halo,” others more somber, such as the 14-minute sound poem “I Dream a Highway” that closes the record. Welch harmonizes with herself to good effect, and Rawlings (who seems to handle the trickier guitar stuff) has a stumbling, tuneful sound that works better than first impressions will make you think. The opening cut, “Revelator,” starts with what sounds like a guitar being tuned before cascading into the body of the song. Second time you hear it, it sounds natural and fitting. His guitar parts wander around, beside and over the melody, always returning to the core of the song when needed. The only gripe one can make on this record is that two of its songs (“Dear Someone” and “I Want to Sing That Rock and Roll”) appear on the Down From the Mountain soundtrack. It’s likely that fans of one would buy the other, so you end up wishing that this album had two different cuts on it. Oh well, not a major issue. Fans of everything from Wilco to Nanci Griffith are going to find this record wonderful, a quiet delight.

http://www.gillianwelch.com


Recently on Ink 19...

Dawn Riding

Dawn Riding

Music Reviews

You’re Still Here (The Long Road Society and Speakeasy Studios SF). Review by Carl F. Gauze.

Little Feat

Little Feat

Event Reviews

With Miko Marks opening a wonderful evening in Iowa City, Little Feat plunder their back catalog as Jeremy Glazier stands beneath the freak flag.

Meditations on Crime

Meditations on Crime

Print Reviews

Politics is Crime. Crime is Politics. Discuss… Carl F. Gauze reviews Meditations on Crime, the book half of Harper Simon’s super-collaborative art and music project.

Porn and Ice Cream

Porn and Ice Cream

Screen Reviews

Three aimless misfits find themselves a purpose when they unwittingly start a band. It’s not your typical rock story, as Ian Koss explains.

Fire and Iceland

Fire and Iceland

Interviews

New York filmmaker April Anderson talks with Bob Pomeroy about volcanoes, horses, and making documentaries in Iceland.

Best of Film 2022

Best of Film 2022

Screen Reviews

With a year of festival and microcinema screenings behind them, Lily and Generoso select and review their ten favorite films, six supplemental features, and one exceptional repertory release of 2022.

Laura Citarella

Laura Citarella

Interviews

Director Laura Citarella, of the famed filmmaking collective El Pampero Cine, has created with her newest feature Trenque Lauquen a provocative transformation of her protagonist Laura (Laura Parades), whom Citarella first introduced in her 2011 film Ostende. Lily and Generoso enjoyed an in-depth conversation with Citarella about Trenque Lauquen when it screened at AFI Fest 2022.

New Music Now 009: Sleepyhead

New Music Now 009: Sleepyhead

Features

Join us for a new edition of New Music Now, with our special musical guest, Sleepyhead. All three members of the band are school teachers, so you didn’t hear it from us, but there might be a pop quiz about their album New Alchemy after the show.

%d bloggers like this: