Van Morrison’s ten thousandth album, Pay The Devil, was released today, and while it is definitely the country album he promised, it’s still Van Morrison doin’ what he does best: singing big warm songs that make your heart grow two sizes (or was that the Grinch? either way….) and make the world turn a little slower.
Much of his new album I don’t personally care for, but some of you more country-leaning folk will like the lazy, twangy feel. It is an interesting combination of clear and distinctive voice of the so-called “Belfast Cowboy” combining with very classic country sounds, reminiscent of Hank Williams (who he covers on several tunes), old Johnny Cash, or Patsy Cline.
One song that I very very much enjoy, though, is actually a cover of an old Chuck Willis number:
“What Am I Living For” – Van Morrison
Morrison makes this track less country-western (but still a languid treat), and has a good dollop of soul in it with a hearty piano base. It’s a front porch, barefoot, August sunset tune. I feel like I should pour some Southern Comfort and slow dance around the dusty floorboards. Snag this one.