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Tuesday
Oct132009

RICHARD HAWLEY - Truelove's Gutter

Richard Hawley is a rare talent in a time of hyper-hipsterism and trainspotting, who bucks current trends and looks more to Sinatra’s moodier work and Scott Walker’s spacious sound universe than more current and fashionable fellows. Hawley’s music has been defiantly out of step with the times since he emerged in 2002 after a decade of sideman status in the Longpigs and, more notably, Pulp. A seasoned session player, his guitar playing (like his singing style and taste for arrangements) is restrained and, at the same time, remarkably rich. His patented baritone croon and love for reverb-laden country music (in that lush Francoise Hardy or Lee Hazlewood kind of way) reliably recreate the same late-night vibe he’s been honing from the start, but very little from this year can touch this album for its sheer beauty and understated sexiness. One of this writer's top picks for 2009.  

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