Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
The gospel according to Ray Wylie Hubbard. It’s time for your Sunday sermon delivered by none other than Mr. Hubbard. If Ray Wylie Hubbard were my preacher, I would never miss a week. Heck, with this album I have a built in service when I need a little religion. I am listening to every word. This album is gospel. blues, and some raw, down and dirty folk music. Blues is certainly the backbone. After all, RWH is a bonafide blues man.
Definitely religion has a big role in this 11 part play. With song titles such as God Looked Around (Track 1), Lucifer and The Fallen Angels (Track 4), Tell The Devil I’m Getting There As Fast As I Can (Track 7), and The Rebellious Sons (Track 8). Ray is is becoming more spiritual and philosophic as he ages. His wisdom has been shared with us.
Speaking of The Rebellious Sons, this song is a winner. It is similar in style to other RWH songs as far a verse and chorus, but the guitar playing is phenomenal. Curtis Roush is playing guitar on this track and his playing is exceptional. Roush is also the lead guitarist for the Austin based band The Bright Light Social Hour.
Ray does two duets on here with some very accomplished singers. In Times Of Cold (Track 11) is performed with Patti Griffith. The other song is actually a trio, not a duet because it has both Eric Church and Lucinda Williams. Tell The Devil I’m Gettin’ There As Fast As I Can is a masterpiece. The chorus with both Church and Williams are absolutely tear jerking. I have to admit I am partial to Lucinda’s voice, but both are great. This song tells a story of Ray’s life and the words are prophetic. He can write his ass off.
If you are a Ray Wylie Hubbard enthusiast, and a lot of you are, then you will surely acquire this. I am not talking to you folks. I am talking to the people that don’t own any Ray Wylie Hubbard records or maybe never heard of Ray. Well, here is a stepping stone into the wonderful world of RWH. Don’t pass up this golden opportunity.