John Moreland - Big Bad Luv LP
Following up the breakthrough is a tricky business. The easiest thing for John Moreland to do following the success of his 2015 album High On Tulsa Heat would have been to deliver a sequel-like rehash of the acoustic glories of that album. Instead he beefs things and takes a full-band approach on Big Bad Luv, which contains almost as many hooks as it does Moreland‰۪s hard-earned kernels of truth.
You can sense the difference right off the bat with ‰ÛÏSalisaw Blue,‰ which delivers some serious heartland crunch. ‰ÛÏAin‰۪t We Gold‰ flirts with funk, while ‰ÛÏIt Don‰۪t Suit Me (Like Before)‰ locates a chugging, Allman Brothers-style groove. Even mid-tempo numbers like ‰ÛÏLies I Chose To Believe‰ and ‰ÛÏAmen, So Be It‰ find ways to engage the listener rhythmically as Moreland does his typically astute job with lyrics.