Artist: Amanda Richards and the Good Long Whiles
Album: Tough Ones to Love
Label: Amanda Richards Records
Release Date: 11/04/2016
Amanda Richards is no stranger to lovers of Americana music. This is her fourth studio album, and it is a rousing success. It will delight her many fans and should garner her many new ones.
The Good Long While know exactly how to realize her compositions, and her songwriting remains her strongest asset. These guys know how to render authentic, gutsy country-soul and roots-rock. They were born to the breed.
The opening tune, “Fresh Kill,” is stellar. It charges straight ahead irresistibly and shows off a super lead banjo break. Her lyrics are incisive, no-nonsense revelations: “I’ll lick the salty tears right off your face / It’s a bitter sadness, but I’ve come to like the taste.” Throughout this album she is attempting to grapple with loving a somewhat aloof, unreachable, self-absorbed, blinded by his own troubles and inner demons guy. He’s blind to all she has to offer and she is (sometimes) too hooked to flee. It all comes together in the brilliant “Lame Tattoos,” wherein she lampoons her erstwhile lover, even unto the degradation of old age: “But there’ll be some things you’ll never lose / Like your battle scars and lame tattoos.” Oh, heavenly smack down. Go Amanda!
If you appreciate great music, then you appreciate great Americana. This is the real deal. Do yourself a favor and latch on this Amanda Richards’ offering.