Sam Outlaw – Angeleno [album review]

by Woody on August 6, 2015

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photo by Matt Wignall

I woke up on the Saturday of SXSW with a hangover, sore limbs and a rainy forecast. Needless to say I didn’t leap out of bed full of inspiration. But off we went to the Brooklyn Brewery party at Licha’s, specifically to see The Lowest Pair and maybe catch another set by The Deslondes. As we saddled up to the bar in the back to tackle a Bloody, a gentleman was hitting the stage with a cowboy hat and a full on band.

Outlaw eased us into the day (with aforementioned Blood Mary) with a delightful set of mid-tempo twang. In between sets I struck up a conversation with one of the women in his band and told me his debut would be seeing the light of day this summer. Angeleno is everything I was expecting it to be. It is an album of twangy love songs that Outlaw nails. As he said on CBS Saturday morning, he might not be the best guitar player or singer but he can write a damn good song.

Outlaw, based in LA, lets his locale seep into the music. As he’s mentioned, its tough to live in LA without any Mexican influence seeping into your being. That gives the album a nice tint throughout; you can hear that loud and clear on Who Do You Think You Are? below, and on the title track. Another top track is Country Love Song, a song about missing your love while you’re on the road.

Angeleno was produced by Ry Cooder and has a host of top notch guests including Cooder’s son. His touring band is no group of slouches either and you can judge below. Angeleno is one of the most pleasant and well-done twang albums you’ll hear this year. He’s poised for some great things.

Follow me on Twitter at @WoodyHearYa or @HearYa

Sam Outlaw is here

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