Joe Ely

Streets of Sin

Rounder Records 011 661 3181-2

Joe Ely, vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, percussion, keyboards and harmonica; Gary Herman, bass guitar; Rob Gjersoe, acoustic and electric guitars, resonator and dobro; Rafael Gayol, drums and percussion; Joel Guzman, keyboards, organ and Baffetti Accordion; Davis Grissom, electric guitar; and Charles Searles, Sizzle Cymbals and percussion.

This CD is Joe Ely's first studio production in over six years and reflects his personal view of everyday life with lyrics that reveal a wandering spirit. With the exception of two cuts, the remaining ten tunes were written by Ely. A bonus is the fact that the lyrics of each tune are contained in the liner notes and this makes them all the more meaningful.

The content is definitely traditional country music. The resplendent lyrics are full of unbridled passion and Ely has an articulate delivery. The instrumentation is excellent with surprising, shimmery effects especially on the tune "All That You Need." "Run Little Pony" is a catchy little ditty with a great organ solo. The title cut, "Streets of Sin," and a couple others were a little too "country" for my taste. I love the phrase "love, wine and gasoline don"t mix with jealousy" in the tune "Twisty River Bridge." The tune "Wind's Gonna Blow You Away" has a Cajun influence with accordion accompaniment.

This CD will appeal to country music aficionados and is an excellent story-telling effort from a gifted troubadour.

by Dorothy Hill


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