B. Isbell
“THE AWAKENING EP”
©2008 Independently released
Review by Lucky Boyd

Three songs from B. Isbell, but three memorable ones. Galvanizing as they may be, start with “Vice-Presidential Blues” and take your stand on a song obviously inspired by D. Cheney, then move to “Fireflies” and work your way through an acoustic offering that showcases Isbell’s writing. Recalling those days of chasing the illusive gems, Isbell transforms the emotion to maturity in this intimate yet sparsely produced track. Move on, then, to “Katrina” as Isbell winds through this instrumental much like the storm of its name, but with grace and purpose. All in all, a defining project for Isbell, which in its simplicity and brevity, exudes a metamorphic ambiance, all but hinting of a shallow breath that preambles the winds of change. Played in one order, one develops a lineage of emotion that will rise anew when the tracks are played in a different order. Experiment for yourself.