Lonesome Highway: Latest Music Reviews

August 24, 2021

Latest Music Reviews

By Stephen Rapid, August 24, 2021 

Below is an excerpt from Lonesome Highway’s Latest Music Reviews that features Chris J Norwood’s new album: 

Chris J Norwood I Am Not Cool Self Release

 In the opening prologue Norwood tells us quite why he is not cool. “I am not cool, I don’t play rock ’n’ roll / I am just a man trying to sing what I know / I am just a man trying to sing what I know / there’s only two kinds of music what’s true and what ain’t.” Well, he does sings about what he knows and what’s true, but as for not playing rock ’n’ roll, that may depend on your definition of the up-tempo guitar-driven song The Final Girl that follows it. Norwood is one of the two electric guitar players listed in the credits, the other being co-producer (with Norwood) Guillermo Murillo. The rhythm section of Steve Moore and Randall Marsow, aptly deliver the bass and drums respectively. His wife Carrie Norwood completes the line-up on background vocals – a contribution that is notable on many tracks. Listening to the album there also appears to be some other instruments (steel and dobro) in the mix too.

There is a poignancy to the story of Good Guy With A Gun, one of the albums obvious highlights. It tells of a father doing the best he could with his lot but who liked to keep and fire some rounds from his gun. Then, giving in to the pressures of his existence, turns it on himself. In Norwood’s case it is based on personal experience and therefore all the more tragic and layered with realism. The title track in its full song take elaborates on the prologue version both lyrically and musically. There is sense of vulnerability and openness to Norwood’s reading of this statement of his being in which he opts for truth and honesty in a sometimes cruel and often cynical world. There is a range of self-effacement in Norwood’s writing revealing that his “uncoolness” is, in fact, something to savour in his outlook and identity.

Read the full review HERE.

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