Amos Lee: Mission Bell – review

(Blue Note)

Blessed with a classic blue-eyed soul voice, Philadelphia's Amos Lee has courted the mainstream a little too assiduously on his last three albums. Taking himself to Calexico's Arizona studio (Joey Burns produces) has lent his gentle anguish wider, more sonically interesting settings. Alongside folky pop such as "El Camino" come western-hued outings such as "Hello Again", with its Tex-Mex brass and shimmering guitars, and the still, echoing "Out of the Cold". Lee's themes are romantic loss and personal redemption (religious imagery is never far away), to which Lucinda Williams (on "Clear Blue Eyes") and Willie Nelson (on "Behind Me Now") add a touch of gritty experience. Classy work.


Neil Spencer

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

AA Bondy: Believers – review
AA Bondy's hushed melancholia is quietly spellbinding, says Phil Mongredien

Phil Mongredien

27, Nov, 2011 @12:04 AM

The Felice Brothers: Celebration, Florida – review
The Felice Brothers include synths and found sounds to winning effect, writes Molloy Woodcraft

Molloy Woodcraft

21, May, 2011 @11:05 PM

Bonnie 'Prince' Billy: Wolfroy Goes to Town – review
The prolific Will Oldham returns with a sparse, intimate album that rewards careful listening, writes Kitty Empire

Kitty Empire

29, Oct, 2011 @11:05 PM

Article image
Chris Martin and Jonny Buckland; Gillian Welch – review
Chris Martin and Jonny Buckland – Coldplay Redux – take a break from arenas and stadiums, writes Kitty Empire

Kitty Empire

27, Nov, 2011 @12:06 AM

Angus & Julia Stone review – powerful and easy on the ear
The siblings return with an album that adds power to their trademark blend of blissed-out Laurel Canyon folk and eerie MOR, writes Paul Mardles

Paul Mardles

02, Aug, 2014 @11:05 PM

CD: Willie Nelson and the Cardinal, Songbird

Country titan felled by mad axeman Ryan Adams

Neil Spencer

15, Oct, 2006 @2:11 PM

Band of Brothers review – Willie Nelson on gleeful, defiant form

The octogenarian outlaw's stuttering guitar and laid-back delivery remain unique and oddly touching, writes Neil Spencer

Neil Spencer

14, Jun, 2014 @11:01 PM

Article image
Hurray for the Riff Raff review – magnificent, rousing and tender

Alynda Lee Segarra takes tradition and adds her own spin – of a runaway American teen who rode the freight trains, writes, Kitty Empire

Kitty Empire

25, May, 2014 @10:00 AM

Article image
Gillian Welch: 'A lot of the songs are done in one take. Maybe two'
Celebrated acoustic duo Gillian Welch and David Rawlings talk to Phil Hogan about authenticity, Nashville, and why there's nothing 'old' about their music

Phil Hogan

20, Nov, 2011 @12:04 AM

Article image
Joan Shelley: The Spur review – timeless and vital Americana
Pretty but unsentimental reflections on putting down roots inform the singer-songwriter’s elegant seventh album

Kitty Empire

26, Jun, 2022 @8:00 AM