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coverpic flag US - Idaho - Full Moon 135 - 09/26/07

Josh Ritter
The Historical Conquests of Josh Ritter

I have to admit, I've been a Ritter-fan from the moment I heard the first few lines of "Come And Find Me" ('If I could trace the lines that ran - Between your smile and your sleight of hand') off of his second album, Golden Age of Radio. His ear for melody and his sense of lyricism is not difficult to detect. His need to tell a story and wish to reach further every time he comes across something to tell seems to get stronger for every album. This means that his fifth album of new material is probably his best. Considering that his songs are something you can always trust being good, it's a strong statement.

Not a weak song, not a story I wouldn't want to tell and not a second too long or wasted. To me, he's been both brave and funny on the previous albums, but here he actually opens a song ("Mind's Eye") with a rip-off from the opening guitar on "London Calling", and doing it with his head held high. That's tough move that makes you smile and nod. Further down he lifts his hat to The Knack's "My Sharona" on "Rumours". Difficult as it is to point out the best tunes here, it's actually more depending on the day you're listening to the album. Today it's "The Temptation of Adam", "Wait for Love" and "Real Long Distance". Tomorrow I might shake my booty to "Right Moves" and dream away on "Still Beating". Go right, go Ritter.

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