2016 Honorable Mention Pick 8

James McMurtry: Complicated Game (Complicated Game, 2016)

This roots record has a lot going for.  It sounds great, the band plays very tastefully, and McMurtry rocks some pretty high end lyrics.  On the down side McMurtry’s voice is gruff and limited, which is fine with me but may not work for others.  When I don’t like the lyrics (for example, the second to last song Long Island Sound) I find the tune a bit tiresome.

The first song is great, probably my favorite on the record.

I like about two thirds to three quarters of the tunes on the record with a preference for the slower songs over the rockers.  I like this one.

And I don’t love track 4 and track 9.  Check him out, it’s rare to see someone putting such an emphasis on the lyrics so I give a lot of respect to that.



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