Lambchop - OH (Ohio) (3 stars)

Lambchop OH (Ohio)

After the melancholy of Lambchop’s last album, the illness-inspired Damaged, Kurt Wagner and his band return with a more upbeat – and occasionally up-tempo – offering. Their tenth album definitely has a lighter feel than its gloomy predecessor, but in all other respects it has the familiar and distinctive sound the band evolved while helping to usher in the new wave of music from their hometown, Nashville.

There’s laid-back country balladry in ‘Slipped Dissolved and Loosed’ and meditative musings on ‘Popeye’, while ‘Of Raymond’ showcases the horn-backed soul introduced on what probably remains Lambchop’s most popular record, Nixon. ‘Sharing A Gibson With Martin Luther King Jr’ meanwhile reminds us that Wagner and the boys can, when they put their backs into it, rock out very nicely indeed.

Wagner has now streamlined the band to a core group of seven musicians, and he has, apparently, finally accepted that he’s the frontman. Whatever the case, the sound remains – pleasantly – the same.

(City Slang)

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