Reviewed by Raoul Hernandez, Fri., May 26, 2017
Dallas born, Palestine raised, Manor and Wimberley farmed, Marfa inspired, and Austin by way of outstanding family, Chris Jamison now counts as Asheville, North Carolina's gain. Recorded at South Austin's White Room Studios with local compadres, his fifth LP in a decade, Mindless Heart, belongs on our ledger still. Airy tenor crossing Josh Rouse and Paul Simon, the singer's vocal yearn and its subtle echo sets a waking spell matched to an enveloping strum of acoustics, pedal steel, and mandolin – all polished with soft piano and crisped by organ. Mindless Heart marinates headier than fine spirits consumed alongside even finer grub, a warm, dizzying buzz of country-leaning folk that's part Nashville Skyline (opener "More Love"), Lord Huron ("Wanderin'"), Rick Danko ("Lover's Lane"), and Woody Guthrie, to whom Jamison perhaps offers up a harmonica-haunted original borrowing the title "Pretty Boy Floyd." Mantelpiece heirloom all the way that latter track, which could've been the title cut. Melancholic ("Mindless Heart") or spry ("Mystery Van") – even outright sing-along (closer "Whole of My Heart") – Chris Jamison is anyone's dividend.