After nearly four decades (going back to 1979 when he formed Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver following stints with Jimmy Martin, J.D. Crowe, and the Country Gentlemen) and 40 albums, the ever-prolific Doyle Lawson has sure figured out how to get the job done. His aptly-titled new release is tight, concise, masterfully rendered, and no doubt delivered right on schedule.
These 12 selections run the conventional but thoroughly satisfying gamut from traditional and nostalgic to cutting-edge and contemporary. On the mellower and more nostalgic side of the spectrum, there’s a robust re-visitation to the pop oldie, “What Am I Living For,” penned many moons ago by Fred Jay and Art Harris, as well as the whimsical and gently ironic opening cut “Kids These Days” co-written by Alex Dooley, Tom Botkin, and Kevin Denny.
On the cutting-edge side of the bandwidth there’s “Drivin’ It Home,” an urgent, remorseful lament penned by Jerry Salley and Kerry Kurt Phillips, and Kieran Kane’s and Jamie O’Hara’s compelling “Bluegrass Blues,” an artifact from the brief but noteworthy career of Kane’s and O’Hara’s country duo The O’Kanes.
Somewhere between fall deeply moving inspirational songs such as “Little Girl,” a powerful tale of faith-born-of-abject tragedy written by the late great Harley Lee Allen, and the soul-searching “Life To My Days,” co-authored by Jerry Salley, Lee Black, and Devin McGlamery. There are other gems, too—“Life Of A Hard Workin’ Man,” an eloquent blue-collar anthem penned by Quicksilver members Joe Dean, Eli Johnston, and Dustin Pyrtle. Just as delightful is a fervent revival of “Love Lives Again,” a country blast from the past penned by George Richey, Carmol Taylor, and Norris D. Wilson. (Mountain Home, P.O. Box 829, Arden, NC 28704, www.mountainhomemusiccompany.com.)BA