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Music Review - `The Long Road Home` by Kevin Deal (dmc)

Kevin Deal - The Long Road Home  (click on image to watch video)

22 May 2019

 

Black

A little Hayes Carll and a little Steve Earle, this Texan has a sound all his own. Call it what you want: outlaw country, gospel Americana, straight-up Texas honky-tonk … no matter the label, Deal is the real deal. A mason by trade, and a musician on the side, as this album attests this songwriter is a talented artist no matter the craft. He sculpts songs that linger long after the last listen. In the vein of his Lone Star State brethren, yet another Texas songwriter emerges from this fertile ground. 

Deal offers up 11 originals, plus a pair of covers. Fusing Texas honky-tonk with gospel lyrics, he offers songs of hope and redemption. Produced by legendary Grammy-winning multi-instrumentalist and longtime Joe Ely sideman Lloyd Maines (father of Dixie Chick Natalie Maines) who adds harmony vocals and guitars throughout.

The disc opens with the title cut. Featuring rich instrumentation, the songwriter mines the old theme of coming home. Deal sings: “I’m weary deep down in my bones/on the long road home.” Later, the songwriter cover a pair of classics: “Ring of Fire” and “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door.” Deal breathes new life into both of these seminal songs that have been covered more ways than you can make a burger. For the Dylan song, Maines adds his signature weepy pedal steel — guiding this version into new territory. For the Cash cover, Deal makes it chug along with a gait like a horse trotting on the wide-open plain. 

One of the other standouts is: “A Reckoning.” A storied tale, not about revenge, but about “reckoning what you’ve done/justice from a barrel of a gun.” The best cut (“Pushing away the Dark”) is an ode to the feeling all artists carry with them daily: the need to create. Deal sings of “old writers, poets and bleeding hearts, minstrels and muses, catching lightning in a bottle and pushing away the dark.” 

While a born-again Christian message of hope underlies The Long Road Home, no matter your religious persuasion, you can enjoy this rich music and its positive messages.  – David McPherson 

 

 

David McPherson

David McPherson - Author. The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern: A Complete History Dundurn Press (Sept. 23, 2017)

www.mcphersoncommunications.com

davidmcpherson.ca 

@mcphersoncomm

http://ca.linkedin.com/in/davidmcpherson73

To Read All of David's Reviews, Click Here

 

 

 


 

 

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