The Skinny: Jimmie Dale came to some notoriety in the early ’90s out of the Texas country scene. His distinctive nasal tenor captures the high-lonesome chic of the modern alt-country of the day. This is the final installment in the trio of major-label releases for Jimmie Dale on Elektra.
Sounds like: Hank Williams I, Roy Orbison, Buddy Holly, Joe Ely, Butch Hancock, Buddy Miller, Sam Phillips
Deeper Thoughts: Producer T-Bone Burnett goes long on the atmospherics on this recording. There are a lot of volume swells and tons of reverb. It’s a fun exercise in playing around with the traditional Texas-countryness of Jimmie Dale, dressing him up in modern guitar tones and sophisticated rhythms. You can sort of tell between the tunes that Elektra thought might hit as singles and the stuff Jimmie Dale and T-Bone just had a blast cooking up. “There She Goes” comes to mind, which sounds like a lost Roy Orbison side with the Crickets backing him up.
The Sonics: This is a very T-Bone Burnett production (I kept waiting for a Coen Brothers film to pop up). For all its modernity, this is a pretty top & mid-heavy collection. Lot’s of interesting and inventive sounds, but the bottom end gets a bit thin and floppy. It’s gimmicky at times and seems produced specifically for Saturday afternoon public radio DJ programs. Thankfully, Jimmie Dale’s plaintive voice soars above every quirky mix.