time, but not a good time, Malcolm Holcombe was among the wraiths – Greg
Garing, Tom House – whose commitment to song gave heft to Nashville’s
underground. Broken by his own weight, he repaired to the cold mountains of
N.C., stapled the bits back together best he could, and went on with it.
his eighth release, including the debut Geffen mostly squashed and not counting
some others. It was recorded over three days in Austin for Jimmy LaFave’s
label, and Holcombe’s collaborator and producer Jared Tyler has managed as
pretty an acoustic setting as such a cracked-pepper voice could hope for. Tart
fiddle, well-picked guitar trailing Mississippi John Hurt. But it’s the words;
always has been. “My heart loses time/where has it gone?” he sings, for love.
“We can’t kill everybody/with the bloody hands of freedom,” he offers, for
commentary. It is possible to sing along, rear your head back and inflect the
joy of his voice. Joy. Never thought he’d make it; damn glad he did.
DOWNLOAD: “One Leg at a Time,” “To Drink
the Rain” GRANT ALDEN