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May 1999

Chris Smither
Drive You Home Again
High Tone

Another accomplished picker, Chris Smither plays the moody troubador on Drive You Home Again (HighTone 8098: 46:23). Like Morrisey, Smither prefers an introspective approach, as on "No Love Today" and the title track. There's a touch of Mark Knopfler in his vocal delivery and a dose of Piedmont in his playing, as on "Get a Better One." "Tell Me Why You Love Me" is a delightful
detour into Tex Mex territory while "Rattlesnake Preacher" is imbued with a gospel feel. He strikes a poignant note on the tender "So Long," gets rowdy on a bluesy interpretation of the traditional "Duncan & Brady" and rocks out on "Steel Guitar." Smith is probably more appealing to fans of Randy Newman and John Hiatt than hardcore blues hounds, but he is quite talented nonetheless.

Originally published in May 1999
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