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Review: Matt Bauer – The Jessamine County Book of the Living by Jayson

Damn. This is powerful stuff. It actually might be a little too much for me.

In a nutshell, Matt Bauer plays symphonic folk. He is the only musician I’ve heard embrace the potential of marrying symphonic music with an existing style since Let It Come Down was released. For Jessamine… it really serves to amplify the deeply emotional nature of the music without overpowering the folk/Americana sound. It’s really the perfect accompaniment.

The Jessamine County Book of the Living is a heartbreaking. Matt Bauer has a wonderful voice, amazingly powerful in a subtle, wavering way; haunting even. I feel like I can hear every rough patch and sorrow in his life when he sings, and this is where I say it’s a little too much. This album is one of those things that so emotionally resonant, that by the fourth track I was starting to tear up a bit. I’ve said in previous reviews that I am not so much a man of emotions, but Matt Bauer’s music is so emotionally primal that it just pushes past all that and calls up every rough patch and sorrow in my life when I’m hearing it. And yeah, that is Jolie Holland singing with him, wow.

It’s a beautiful, beautiful album, but damn man… got something in my eye here…

Blacklight Horses

Out now on Crossbill Records. 

– Jayson

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