Steve Earle – Just An American Boy

Stunning two-disc live set from recent dates in Toronto and Bloomington, Indiana. Accompanying DVD to follow

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“No matter what anybody tells you, it is never ever unpatriotic or un-American to question any-fucking-thing in a democracy,” seethes Earle before charging into “(What’s So Funny About) Peace, Love And Understanding”. Right now, he seems intent on being the conscience of an entire nation. Last year’s brilliant, empire-baiting Jerusalem is well represented here?equal parts bile and horror at Bush’s shoot-’em-up jingoism?but the more personal “Hometown Blues” and “I Remember You” are wearily glorious. And while bemoaning the dearth of latterday heroes prior to “Christmas In Washington”, it’s his tribute to mentor/inspiration Townes Van Zandt?magnificent finger-picked covers of “Rex’s Blues/Fort Worth Blues”?that hits home hardest.

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