Music Reviews - Saskatchewan country alive and well

Colter Wall- Imaginary Appalachia

Traditional Country music is alive and well thanks to Saskatchewan’s Colter Wall. Wall presents his original updated spin on the traditional stylings of the likes of Cash, Haggard and Van Zandt.

With his unique vocal presentation, Wall enhances the mood of the mostly somber country dustbowl ballads heard throughout the album of six original tunes and one cover.

The Wall penned songs hold their own quite well, especially the haunting “ Living On The Sand”, which will have you spitting dust as you reach for the shot of whiskey you’ll need to quench your sudden thirst.

The plaintive fiddle on “Caroline” creates a murky mood for the heartbreaking ballad that will drag you into the story and will get your chaps in a knot for sure.

I tip my hat, sorry it’s a ball cap not a Stetson, to Wall’s brilliant cover of the great Towne Van Zandt’s haunting masterpiece “Nothin”. The electric reverb and Wall’s strong vocal will make your spine shutter like a rattlesnake bite’s venom shooting through your bones.  Sorry there’s no antidote.

Wall’s finger picking guitar style, although at home in this traditional country style, sounds like he’s conjuring up the spirit of the country blues masters of past. This is evident and in the opening track “Sleeping On The Blacktop”, and throughout his resplendent bleak and melancholy repertoire.

Colter Wall is an artist that impressed me with his unusual style of familiar uniqueness. The way he presents his new country traditional country fusion creating a sound that is familiar yet it feels like he’s breaking new ground is magnificent.

Wall is definitely someone to watch in 2016 and will definitely continue to impress critics and fans for many years to come.

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