August 8, 2022
The American Railroads have influenced the rich history of the country’s music more than most realize, and here we’re treated to an incredible roster of talent penning songs about the rails that are both covers and originals.
“Here Comes The Train Again” opens the listen with plenty of powerful grit and warm, soulful sounds, as Stephen McCarthy and Carla Olson make some great rural rock, and it isn’t long until Rocky Burnette brings us the swift drumming, spirited harmonica and jumpy keys of “Mystery Train”.
Some of the more well known names arrive closer to the middle, where John Fogerty and family deliver the very pretty and eloquent “City Of New Orleans”, while “Southwest Chief”, by Dave Alvin, is full of vivid storytelling amid adventurous percussion and meticulous guitar work.
Making our way towards the end, Robert Rex Waller Jr. brings us a Springsteen-esque delivery of the very poetic and powerful “Midnight Rail”, and McCarthy and Olson return for the pedal steel and string friendly finish of “I Remember The Railroad”, that’s got plenty of retro-rock appeal.
There’s over 70 minutes of music here and it apparently took a decade to assemble. In addition to the artists above, we’re also treated to Rocky Burnette, Peter Case, Kai Clark, Alice Howe, Deborah Poppink, Dom Flemons, John York, Dustbowl Revival, Paul Burch, Fats Kaplin, Al Haynes of Seratones, and James Intveld, and they all make for a charming listen that taps into the folklore of the railways.