Moreland and Arbuckle: Just a Dream

Album review
Moreland and Arbuckle: Just a Dream

Moreland and Arbuckle

Just a Dream

Label: Telarc
Media: CD
Genre: Rock/pop

On its fourth and finest album, the Kansas hill-country blues duo of Aaron Moreland and Dustin Arbuckle stages a compelling coming of age party. All the elements defining the group’s astonishing 1861 (2008) and powerhouse Flood (2010) coalesce here. M&A’s attack, bolstered by the solid drumming/percussion of Brad Horner, is about body blows and haymakers—a relentless, charging, country-blues style, rough and raw as fashioned by Arbuckle’s muscular, crying vocals and raw, wailing harmonica, backed up by Moreland’s intense, relentless, often fuzzed-out guitar (traditional electric and custom cigar box both). Chris Wiser joins up to add honky-tonk keyboard to the stomping blues of “The Brown Bomber” and moaning, Gregg Allman- esque B3 shadings to a swaggering take on Tom Waits’ “Heartattack and Vine.” This bigger sound suits M&A—“Shadow Never Changes,” dark musings that may well be a comment on a nation in crisis, features the organ, harp, and guitar in heat, erecting an imposing wall of malevolent sound ahead of a subdued but telling exhale signaling song’s end. Producer Moreland keeps the sonics hot and in your face throughout, the instruments and Arbuckle’s fervent singing constituting a united, full-throttle, rock ’n’ blues assault. It’s a beautiful thing. 

More Info

  • primary artist, Moreland and Arbuckle
  • CD

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