The Hiatt revivial goes up a notch with this stunning album from the senior songwriter (or songwriting senior). Improving on 2011's Dirty Jeans, Hiatt uses the same producer and back up band to create his best album since Crossing Muddy Waters. He seems to have woken up, knows what to write about, how to play, who to play with and who to listen to. The album sounds handmade, and ooozes taste in song selection, ordering of the tracks and how much guts to put into each vocal.
No duff tracks - that's right, maybe a first for Hiatt - all of the songs are at least good. It kicks off with a rousing 'We're Allright Now', then a biting show stopper, 'Bite Marks', and a powerful 'It All Comes Back Someday.' The funny 'Wood Chipper is topped by one of my faves -'My Business' - a gruff blues of wit and style. Slowing the pace, but not the quality is 'I Just Don't Know What to Say', then the fabulous 'I Know How To Lose You'. Just when the pace drops for 'You're All The Reason I Need', he powers back with 'One of them Damn Days' - another standout. 'No Wicked Grin' is tense and witty, 'Give it Up' another rouser, and the end track 'Blues Can't Even Find Me' contains the special self deprecation that Hiatt has long mastered.
The playing is immaculate. Kenny Blevins on drums again, Doug Lancio fabulous lead and slide, and Patick O'Hearn on bass all deliver the goods. The additional musicians never dominate the core. Hiatt's voice is definitely back - as on Dirty Jeans, producer Kevin Shirley records him and the band brilliantly. This is best produced album since Slow Turning and Bring the Family.
It's that good -no, it's that great. Seriously kick ass from one of the elder statesmen.