The Delines (from the album The Imperial available on El Cortez/The Delines)
Stunning, mournful and emotional are apt terms for the sad sonic greatness that is The Imperial, the long-awaited sophomore effort from The Delines. The songwriting of Willy Vlautin, and the aching and soulful vocals of Amy Boone, are backed by an exceptional band whose sparseness is a worthy ally; perfection in a country soul package.
Willy Vlautin is the writer behind the broke-down tales in every Richmond Fontaine album, Amy Boone one of the sisters that made up half of Austin cow-punk outfit The Damnations. The Delines were formed out Vlautin’s decision to write for Boone’s voice, the recording project shelved for years so Boone could recover from a vehicle accident.
The patience that the band and their fans exhibited for its completion of The Imperialproves well worth the wait. A lonely keyboard kicks The Imperialoff with “Cheer Up Charley,” a pep-talk of a song where the narrator gives a boost to a dock-worker.
The melodies creep along at their own pace while songs like “Where Are You Sonny?” and “Roll Back My Life” reference locations in any town U.S.A. “Eddie & Polly” may be the most up-tempo cut on the album, a tune about a couple out on the town accentuated by atmospheric pedal steel that reminds everyone ‘there ain’t no good place to be broke’. “He Don’t Burn For Me” is a soulful heartbreaker that finds the narrator accepting the demise of a relationship. Willy Vlautin has a knack for making champions out of average and run of the mill humans, and having Boone sing his stories with a beautiful vocal adds a dose of care and compassion to characters you will forever cheer on. The Delines make use of hushed guitar, pedal steel and keyboards to play a supporting role to the stories, creating songs for The Imperialthat are melodically memorable and elegantly beautiful. (by Bryant Liggett)
Listen and buy the music of The Delines from AMAZON