Charlie Louvin – Charlie Louvin (2007)

Posted by on October 31, 2012as

What’s terrific about this album is the sound of Charlie Louvin’s voice. Weathered and worn by his 79 years, its fragility underscores the humanity in the morality plays he favors, like the gentle pledge of faith “The Christian Life.” What’s disappointing is its lack of imagination. Despite the presence of skilled contemporary songwriters like Elvis Costello and Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, the only new tune is “Ira,” Louvin’s tribute to his late, high-tenor-singing brother. As the Louvin Brothers, Charlie and Ira took shape-note-based close-harmony singing to the pinnacle of country music in the 1940s and ’50s, earning a place in the Country Music Hall of Fame. On these dozen songs, Louvin’s joined on vocals by George Jones, Alex McManus of Bright Eyes, Will Oldham, Bobby Bare, Tom T. Hall, Tweedy, Costello, and others, with Marty Stuart on mandolin and a crack studio band including Chris Scruggs of BR-549 and angelic vocalist Dianne Berry. Bare and Berry manage to make magic with Louvin; the rest do their best with chestnuts like “Kneeling Drunkard’s Plea” and “Worried Man Blues,” although Jones’s voice is, sadly, ravaged, and the bursts of guitar feedback on the Louvins classic “Great Atomic Power” are absurd. Nonetheless, this album is a welcome return for a country pioneer after a 10-year hiatus from recording. –Ted Drozdowski

mp3 256 kbps | 74 MB | UL

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *