I was this close to writing 40 lines of “Kevin Morby is great” for you, because talking about everything from this guy’s talent, to his fortunate pedigree (The Babies, Woods) is not an easy thing.
And it’s even more frustrating with an artist for whom everything seems as easy as stringing together Bill Fay’s “I Hear You Calling” to his “Parade” without even batting an eye.
If you haven’t heard Harlem River, Morby’s brilliant and delicate first solo album, you don’t know that you should put this record in your backpack and listen to it in your car. You don’t know that this pared-down folk is the perfect soundtrack for your travels, for watching landscapes slipping by or faces along a city canal. That these pieces, whether they’re long and full of layers like “If You Leave and If You Marry” or as quick as “My Name,” are perfectly heady for forgetting the steering wheel in your hands, the straight lines and the noises of the city.
It’ll be just as easy for you to fall in love with Morby’s Dylan-esque ballads as it is for him to change from bass to guitar. And in retrospect, 40 lines of “Kevin Morby is great” really wouldn’t have been enough.
Still Life, the new album from Kevin Morby, is available today from Woodsist.
Translated by Lauren McCracken