Will T. Massey
Reviewed by Doug Freeman, Fri., Nov. 28, 2008
Will T. MasseyWayward Lady
Creating a political album of lasting impression is an exercise in balance, disgust, and defiance, vitriol and honesty existing in equal measure. While Massey certainly has plenty to protest with Wayward Lady, he largely subscribes to a policy of speaking softly and carrying a big stick. Effectively stark with subtle shades of Richard Bowden's fiddle, Lady maintains a calm, reflective tone, and though the more direct and overt missives such as opener "A Soldier's Love" and "American Prayer" are heartfelt and personal, Massey finds his best voice on tunes that weave his concern and frustration within more grounded narratives. "Peace Train" is a keeper, and the acoustic sing-talk of "Hooker With a Purple Heart" offers a moving tale, but most surprising is a beautifully stripped version of Pink Floyd's "The Gunner's Dream." The odd allegory of "Wayward Lady U.S.A." may best encapsulate Massey's torn vision of hurt and hope, though: "You're a wicked woman, but I love you."