Delta Spirit – History From Below

January 01, 1970

(Rounder)

 

www.rounder.com

 

Delta Spirit’s 2008 debut Ode
to Sunshine
was recorded in a cabin they borrowed from a friend, and it
showed. The album had a wonderful lo-fi spirit, as if a bunch of very talented
friends with a love for ’60s music bashed out some tunes. For History from Below the band went a
different route, opting for a real studio and outside producers.

 

As you might expect, the group sounds more professional – some of
the ramshackle spirit of their debut is gone. But for anything that’s been
lost, something else has been gained. Years of constant touring have made Delta
Spirit a tighter band. They’ve also grown as songwriters, writing compelling
stories that are far more fleshed out than anything on their first album. The soulful,
gospel-influenced “Vivian”, about the death of singer Matt Vasquez’s
grandparents, is one of the most moving songs you’ll hear this year. There
aren’t many bands who could pull that off, then turn around and tackle driving
rock (“Bushwick Blues”), folk (“Ransom Man”, “Salt in the
Wound”) and country-ish ballads (“Devil Knows Your Dead”, “Scarecrow”)
before closing with a eight-minute ripped-from-the-headlines revenge
tale “Ballad of Vitaly.” 

 

If they keep growing at this rate, the sky’s the limit.

 

Standout Tracks: “Vivian”
“Bushwick Blues” HAL BIENSTOCK

 

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