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Margo Price – Midwest Farmer’s Daughter 

April 8, 2016

With a voice somewhere between Emmy Lou and Dolly and with the pen of Loretta Lynn, Margo Price storms out of a Memphis studio in a Nashville state of mind. This is one hell of a debut.

The LP opens with the autobiographical “Hands Of Time” which is an amazing story and assuming it is true, reveals that Margo is COUNTRY to the core.  How she rose out of this mess to record this amazing record is a testimony to her genius and resilience.

“About To Find Out” is a sassy dress down of an arrogant asshole. Margo rewrites one of my favorite Dylan lyrics (“Stop all this weeping, swallow your pride/You will not die, it’s not poison”): “Tell me what does your pride taste like honey/Or haven’t you tried it out?”

Looking at the liner notes it does not look like White is involved beyond the label, but “Tennessee Song” is the most Jack White song on the album.

“Since You Put Me Down” is a classic Country tale of betrayal and the self loathing that comes with it: “I killed the angel on my shoulder with a handle of tequila/So I wouldn’t have to spend my nights alone, all alone.”

“Four Years Of Chances” has a bluesy groove and is a kiss off song that has extra bite given the protagonist has found some one better.

“This Town Gets Around” is a nice country swing that calls out the sleazy side of Nashville (or any world where you have to whore yourself to get ahead). Margo manages some gallows humor and some wisdom in the muck: “Maybe I’d be smarter if I played dumb.”

“How The Might Have Fallen” takes 2 Samuel 1:25 for a new ride. It is the only song on the album that Margo did not have a hand in writing. The song has a cool mix of anger and compassion.

“Weekender” is about serving a short sentence in jail. It is a pretty simple observations from someone who should have known better.

“Hurtin’ (On The Bottle)” is a classic Country song about drinking too much.  It follows in the grand tradition of “Tonight The Bottle Let Me Down” (RIP Merle).  If this song doesn’t make her a star then the Country charts are deaf.

“Worlds Greatest Loser” ends the album as a gentle lullaby and the gentle sentiment: “If I lost you I’d lose it all.”

I don’t know a whole lot about country music, but I know what I like and I like Margo Price.  Listen and love it. Congratulations to Third Man Record for sponsoring this tremendous debut – this could be the defining moment for your label. Tomorrow I go to Nashville with the family- this is a pretty amazing prelude.


From → Music Reviews

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