Steve Earle & the Dukes (and Duchesses)

The Low Highway (New West)

Phases & Stages

Steve Earle & the Dukes (and Duchesses)

The Low Highway (New West)

The Low Highway marks several firsts for Steve Earle. First album to credit the Dukes since 1987, it's also the first to acknowledge his wife Allison Moorer and Austin's Eleanor Whitmore as bandmates, dubbed the Duchesses. Three songs written for HBO's Treme, on which Earle played a street musician, make their recorded debuts as well, yet the renegade singer-songwriter's most rewarding accomplishment here remains the variety of styles and the ease with which they're executed. No surprise really, since these Dukes and Duchesses have been his road band for some time, but "Calico County" and "21st Century Blues" hark back to the Texan's Copperhead Road. He gets right to the point with "Burnin' It Down" ("it" being a Walmart) and builds slow 'til it nearly bleeds on "Remember Me." Road records have been done so often they've become cliche. Leave it to Earle to stand that notion on its head by revealing the gravel in his veins.

***.5

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Jack Ingram
Midnight Motel (Record Review)

Doug Freeman, July 15, 2016

Texas Platters
Jeremy O'Bannon
Letter Home (Record Review)

Abby Johnston, July 15, 2016

More by Jim Caligiuri
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
Adult Audio Coloring Book Sampler
A look back at illustrated album covers old and new

July 29, 2016

Texas Platters
My Jerusalem
A Little Death (Record Review)

July 15, 2016

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Steve Earle & the Dukes (and Duchesses)

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
AC Daily, Events and Promotions, Luvdoc Answers

Breaking news, recommended events, and more

Official Chronicle events, promotions, and giveaways

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)