Moot Davis: Moot Davis (2005)

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How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Moot Davis: Moot Davis
If traditional Honky Tonk is what you crave, Moot Davis' self-titled debut CD may be exactly what you're looking for. Mixing western with a little hillbilly, the Trenton, New Jersey-born Davis is a throwback to "classic" country. Davis, who constantly tours with his band, Cool Deal, is a voice to be reckoned with.

Now, country and blues are cousins, but jazz is also a cousin... and not as distant as one might think. The beats and construction of the pieces are strikingly similar. The variation is in the cadence. Many jazz artists, like Doug Wamble, have ventured into country territory. Ray Charles ventured into every American genre there was. Moot Davis' music is classic Americana. It is also getting quite a bit of exposure, as the track "Whiskeytown" from the album is featured prominently in the new film Crash.

Produced by Grammy winner Pete Anderson, Davis, whose voice is reminiscent of a bygone era, is the real deal. Picking up the baton as the next great country crooner destined for the Grand Ole Opry, Davis hits all the right notes. In an age of canned, overproduced, cold, impersonal, and calculated music, Moot Davis' sound brings back the feel, emotion, and most importantly, the sound of authentic country music. Even the titles of his songs are "classic" country. From the rollicking "Thick Of It Now" to the bluesy "Thanks For Breakin' My Heart" and the haunting "Last Train Home," Moot Davis breaths life into his songs and creates real country music.

Davis' debut CD is replete with weepy tales, dusty wide-open roads, cheating women, roadhouses, yearning, loss, bad relationships, pickup trucks, and whiskey. Backed by the prerequisite steel guitar, fiddles, and banjos, Moot Davis sings like Hank Williams reborn.

Other highlights and standout tracks include the previously mentioned "Whiskey Town," "Jug of Wine," and "Stay Gone." The songs on the CD are excellent, clever, witty, funny, and insightful. Each has that authentic '50s country sound that jumps out of the speakers and grabs the listener. This CD is better than good, it is an instant classic.

Track Listing: Thick of It Now; Highway Kind; Jug of Wine; Whiskey Town; Thanks for Breakin' My Heart; Last Train Home; Nothin'; One of a Kind; Halls of Smoke & Wine; Stay Gone

Personnel: Pete Anderson Guitar (Acoustic), Banjo, Mandolin, Percussion, Arranger, Guitar (Electric), Producer, Artwork, Design; Sally Browder Engineer, Mixing; Joe Buck Bass (Electric), Bass (Upright); Jonathan Clark Vocals (bckgr); Moot Davis Guitar (Acoustic), Vocals; Skip Edwards Piano, Guitar (Steel); Josh Florian Mastering; Don Heffington Drums; Jennifer Herold Production Coordination, A&R; Gary Morse Banjo, Dobro, Pedal Steel, Lap Steel Guitar; Tony Rambo Engineer; Jason Robbins Engineer; Lee Thornburg Trumpet; Gabe Witcher Fiddle

Record Label: Little Dog Records

Style: Beyond Jazz


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