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Andrew Bird

Hands of Glory (Mom + Pop)

Reviewed by Abby Johnston, Fri., Oct. 12, 2012

ACL Music Fest Saturday Reviews

Andrew Bird

Hands of Glory (Mom+Pop)

Andrew Bird's March release, Break It Yourself, climbed the Billboard Top 10 and prompted the Chicago whistler's whirlwind of late-night television appearances. Always the overachiever, the fiddler and multi-instrumentalist has something more. Companion piece Hands of Glory restructures the old and new alike in dusty-trail cowboy swag. "Three White Horses" opens on strolling bass, lapsing into a ghostly lonesome and pulls back into a marched and swelling final chorus. Traditional "Railroad Bill" and Townes Van Zandt's "If I Needed You" stand out among Bird's originals, separated by the natural country whine in both his violin and voice. "Orpheo," a reworking of Break It Yourself favorite "Orpheo Looks Back," preserves the lyrics but slows and revamps the sonics into a delicate and devastating soliloquy mapped by Bird's pulled and plucked violin. (4pm, Bud Light stage)

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