Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
Kentucky is the home of some of the most legendary musicians of the last 75 years including The Everly Brothers, Loretta Lynn, Dwight Yoakam, Crystal Gayle, Sturgill Simpson, My Morning Jacket etc. I have a feeling Nick Dittmeier & The Sawdusters may be a member of that list very shortly. Midwest Heart/Southern Blues is their latest offering and it is a beauty from start to finish. Every song is strong as steel and I took to all of the songs on the first listen. They consider themselves as an Americana act, but they are real country. They are what country used to be and should be. They are damn good and rock the house to the foundation. Absolutely professional players backed by great lyrics, and vocals (both lead and backing). The harmonies on this album are legendary. Nick Dittmeier has the perfect country voice and is a pleasure to listen to.
I could literally go through all 10 tracks on this album because, as I stated, all of the songs are hit worthy. For brevity’s sake, I will just pick a few highlights, which is not easy to do. My True Love (Track 1) comes out of the gates strong with some serious picking, lead vocals, and absolutely legendary harmonies. The song is about “Waiting for my true love”. It is 100% country. It definitely has a Byrds/Flying Burrito Brothers feel to it. That is a lofty comparison but the lead and backing vocals are really that good. Stabbed To Death In Ohio (Track 8 ) is a bit of a tragic song about being down on your luck. And it has a good helping of pedal steel on this track and some good twangy guitar. Anyone who has read my reviews know that I fancy both. I really can’t stop listening to this track. Heavy On My Mind (Track 10) is a perfect closer. This song will touch your soul and make you emotional. If it doesn’t evoke those emotions for you, check your pulse. Another example of the stellar harmonies that paint this entire album. I don’t use this term very often, but classic is what comes to mind. Listen and I know you will agree.