purple mountains

The latest (and sadly last) studio album from David Berman uses the Purple Mountains moniker but is essentially a Silver Jews record. It’s a creation born out of loss: he picked up the guitar again after his mother’s death and in the midst of a breakup from his spouse of many years. Turning his gaze on himself with unflinching honesty, he writes directly yet elegantly about what he sees with more than a little wry humour (the languid baritone helps). The palette here draws decidedly from country rock, with plenty of sonic warmth supporting these tracks whose tone veers between audibly heartbroken and something ostensibly jauntier, though since Berman’s recent passing it’s hard not to hear a new poignancy in every self deprecating lyric.

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