Welp. I think it finally happened.
The first album this year that I know will be on my "Best Of" list.
If one were to read the bios of all of the artists Hearth Music represents, one would walk away with the impression that the forests of the Pacific Northwest are teeming with part-time luthiers and folk singers. Pharis and Jason Romero are one of the seemingly many, but their music stands out in many respects.
The Romeros are steeped in their craft. It's really quite difficult to say which of these songs are theirs, and which are traditional gems that the couple have unearthed (or at least put their own polish to.)
Their version of "Wild Bill Jones" will stay in your head for weeks. "Lost Lula", with its plaintive banjo melody, is the standout track here.
This is Americana/(Canadicana/White People Music?) to the bone. The Romeros are as gifted at playing music as they are at writing it -- not such an easy combination to find. Long Gone Out West Blues may take a few spins to really enter your heart, but it will definitely stay with you for a long time.
(PS - The CD packaging is really cool, if you're into that kind of thing.)
Pharis and Jason Romero -- Official, Bandcamp, Facebook