Recorded live over the span of two days at Full Moon Studios in Watkinsville, you’d never know some of the tunes on Always Somethin’ were written as much as 20 years apart. For one, the live takes keep the album fresh and cohesive, but more importantly, 90 Acre Farm plays timeless music. Every original feels like a classic, calling on the beloved country music tropes and themes of love, loss and hard living. But this isn’t just a straight country album; Always Somethin’ draws on the full gamut of Americana soundsâ€”sometimes bounding with quick pickin’ bluegrass barn burners, sometimes slowing things down with a folk lament or howling along with bluesy soul. When the band sings “come on train, pick it up!” it might as well be a command to your feet. “Pick Up Train” is perhaps the most instantly memorable track on the album, and it’s also the most likely to get you to do-si-do.
But every tune features Todd White’s warm baritone storytelling highlighted by the lilting of harmonies of wife Jessica Kirby White. Adam Poulin’s versatile fiddle almost acts like a third vocalist, recalling Charlie Daniels on songs like “Kentucky Valley” or, on songs like “Old Heroes,” singing its own lonesome melodyâ€”his bow pulling the listener’s heartstrings as it runs across the neck. Ron Crescenti’s bass and Joe Bennett’s mandolin are more understated, while Russ Palmer’s howling harmonica will have you longing for dusty trails you didn’t even know you missed. If you are looking for honesty and rootsy warmth, you can’t go wrong with 90 Acre Farm’s long anticipated sophomore release.
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