His country credibility long established by his tenures with Lester Flatt and Johnny Cash, Marty Stuart has always shown respect for the music's roots while also embracing the Nudie-suited, higher-the-hair-closer-to-God, show-biz attitude of a Porter Wagoner. On Country Music, his Columbia debut and first new album in four years, the chameleon-like Stuart has come up with a great, eclectic set of tunes and performances. He kicks things off in high style with “A Satisfied Mind,” a cover of Wagoner's biggest hit, here given a rolling, Waylon Jennings-style arrangement. Stuart includes a respectful but nonetheless dead-on impersonation of the Man in Black on the lesser-known Cash tune “Walls of a Prison.” On “Farmer's Blues,” a new classic he penned with wife Connie Smith, it is hard to tell where Stuart leaves off and guest vocalist Merle Haggard begins–not a bad thing. What is more distinctive is the “Marty Party” good spirits he brings to honky-tonkers like “By George” and “Too Much Month (At the End of the Money).” Country Music does contain a few missteps: a heavy-handed (and botched) attempt at incorporating hip-hop into country (“If There Ain't There Ought'a Be”) could have been more organic and he could have featured the vocal and instrumental accomplishments of his Fabulous Superlatives a bit more. Still, Stuart reminds us that country need not be “alt” to be exciting. –Michael Ross
$ 19,28 *
* last updated on 2. March 2021 at 10:52.