Calexico – The Thread That Keeps Us (Epitaph Records) 2018
The Tucson duo Calexico return with their ninth album – an incredible haul for a band who have been spinning their American and Tex-Mex fayre since 1990. The Thread… is a Eagles like blend of classic Americana with forays into indie and Desert Session-esque rock moments – the kind of music that goes perfectly hand in hand with a poker table set up on a balcony overlooking a blazing red sunset, a bottle of tequila and twenty chilled buds.
This genre of music is not for everyone – U2 have long since proven Americana is a difficult genre to master, but Calexico have been around long enough to know how to avoid the pitfalls of the barriers that circle them and are brave enough to take plunges now and then into alien territory – the mildly paranoid sound of Bridge To Nowhere sneaks up and grabs you, it has a backbone of disjointed moodswing guitar work and a vocal that is part whispered warning – a clear stand out on the album.
For a ninth album the band are in a definite comfort zone with their own craft and ability, but it’s a testament to their own hunger and desire that this never sounds journeyman, and the moments when it takes a left-turn into strange wilderness it always finds its way back after a really interesting tangent.
Worth a blast if you are curious and looking for new music, it may just steal you entirely.