The Imperial by The Delines [6/10]

The Imperial” is modern Americana that sits on the edge of real country and western, a music genre anathema to me, but I enjoyed my numerous listens. Willy Vlautin, of Richmond Fontaine fame and one of the best novelists around, has penned ten melancholic tales of down-and-out tragics, and the band’s singer, Amy Boone (sidelined by a car accident for three years) has a wonderful careworn, yet generous, voice. Standout tracks include the gentle title track with its slide-enriched chorus; the warm-in-spite-of-the-story “Cheer Up Charley”; and the bleak kinda torch song “Holly the Hustle.” A nuanced, unusual album.

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