Seems like every record I review these days has J Mascis sitting in (MV + EE, Hush Arbors and oddest of all, Jeffrey Lewis), but that’ s not such a bad thing, really. I’m finding this new Hush Arbors just a hair less compelling than last year’s self-titled (which was not the first Hush Arbors, not by a long-shot, this guy’s got an armload of small label/self-release/limited edition product floating around), but still fairly engaging. My review ran today at Blurt.
Keith Woods, who records under the name Hush Arbors, has played with many of psychedelic folk's leading lights - Current 93, Six Organs of Admittance, Sunburned Hand of the Man and Wooden Wand among others. His eleventh full-length (and second on Ecstatic Peace!) pulls away, a bit, from the transcendent folk loveliness of last year's self-titled, quickens the pace and jacks up the country two-step under another set of very strong songs. Yankee Reality opens with freewheeling guitars - in "Day Before" one of two tracks where J. Mascis sits in on guitar - and whispery vocals, its warmth as watery and uncertain and welcome as the winter sunshine of its lyrics. "Lisbon" brings in the skittery one-two beat of Saturday night country (it returns, with Mascis drumming this time, in with "Coming Home").
“Day Before” (guess who on guitar!)
“The Devil I Made You High” (my favorite)