William Lazarus - Hawk Medicine
- Artist: William Lazarus
- Album: Hawk Medicine
- Label: Temporary Residence
- Year of Release: 2007
- ME Rating:
- Reviewed by: solitaryman on 2007-11-10
Lazarus (aka Trevor Montgomery) has quite a bit of work under his belt. Tours with Grizzly Bear and Explosions In The Sky, and two previous records (both under Temporary Residence), Songs for an Unborn Sun and Like Trees We Grow Up To Be Satellites. Having no prior experience with his work, I was intrigued going into my initial listen of Hawk Medicine to hear just what someone so obviously respected by talented musicians could offer.
What that is, in particular, is black in nature with a slight light at the end of the long tunnel. Lazarus sound, to quote their press release, "like Bruce Springsteen and Johnny Cash taking turns scaring each other with their political ghost stories while driving down a foggy highway at night with the headlights off". It's all very moody, and Montgomery's voice is a dead ringer for Springsteen's, right down to the exact amount of gravel and grit behind it. These 10 songs vary from melodic mourners to eclectic swooners and rarely traverses from the more classic AM radio sound. Very potent, emotional, and impacting.
The only thing that holds this album back is it's limited scope of imagination. With a band that sounds very in-tune with each other, it would have been interesting to hear more varied songwriting. I'm nit-picking, and this is a great album that's interested me enough to go and check out Lazarus' previous works. Established fans should love it, and fans of darker, moodier Cash or Springsteen or even Neil Young, should check out Hawk Medicine.
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