You can say that there is a dearth of good country music these days and you may not be wrong. Certainly, the pop that comes out of Nashville is hard to define as country. Still, that doesn't mean that you can't find good country (or alt-country) music. Take the new album from Lone Justice for instance. OK, so it's not really a new album. The songs were recorded in 1983. But it is country, and you don't have to listen to much of the album to know that's the case. The album begins with "Nothing Can Stop My Loving You." If this song doesn't get your toes tapping, I can't imagine a song that will. This song cooks with a beat that will get your heart going if you can keep up with it. Then there are maria McKee's vocals. She captures the spirit of a a lot of the classic country artists like Janis Martin.
That opener is followed with a cover of "Jackson," which of course is about as country as a song gets. McKee's vocals in this one remind me a lot of Wanda Jackson. She has the same feisty delivery that made Wanda Jackson famous, and it works perfectly in the give-and-take of this song.
This album was recorded with no overdubs. The result is a recording that captures the energy and spirit of the band. It almost makes you feel like you're experiencing a live performance from the band...30 years after the songs were recorded. Good luck getting that from Nashville pop. If you've been lamenting the lack of good country music these days, this album from Lone Justice is the cure you've been looking for. This is Lone Justice: The Vaught Tapes, 1983 will be available on Omnivore Recordings on 14 January.