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Boomkat Product Review:
There’s more to Kentucky than the Colonel’s famous recipe, and armed with his trademark Resonator guitar R. Keenan Lawler (who was last spotted on the ‘Strands Formally Braided’ CD on Music Fellowship) takes steps in re-branding the bluegrass states for us modern avant-garde heads. Taking a similar route to guitar god John Fahey and the Fahey for our modern age Jack Rose, Lawler wrestles with Bluegrass structures, tearing them apart and bending them into shape as if they were made of thin wire. You might get the hint of a traditional structure for a moment and then we’re back into tangled abstraction, allowing Lawler the space he needs to show off his dextrous fingerpicking. I can’t say I’ve heard Americana interpreted in this way before, there’s something undeniably dark and foreboding about Lawler’s style, which gives his America a quality usually pushed way into the background. A brave move and one which certainly pays off as he treads the line between Tony Conrad’s wild experimentalism and John Fahey’s folk reverence. A bizarre and beautiful statement from a unique voice in American music.