Well, it doesn’t take lengthy for Falling Faster Than You Can Run to expose that Nathaniel Rateliff isn’t in a very good area. His deep funk is revealed incredibly easily on the opening track ‘Still Trying‘: “If you roll in it long enough/your shit won’t also smell” sings Rateliff, in in between crying out, unaccompanied, “I don’t know/I don’t know/a god damned thing”.
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And that’s the feeling that sticks throughout this, frequently extremely fine, brand-new record from Denver, Colorado’s Missouri-born Rateliff. On his second full-length album (dropping the & the Wheel from his name) loneliness is writ large: not the kind of loneliness from actually being along, yet the kind that comes from being constantly surrounded by people yet unable to shake the feeling of finish isolation. Rateliff has actually toured via many type of, many acts over the previous few years and many newly has invested time via Dr Dog and also fellow Denver act (and also friends) The Lumineers. Thankcompletely, Rateliff seldom sounds prefer his friends (you can say I’m not a fan) and rather writes and plays music via many heart and also soul. It’s often his voice that’s the star of the present many thanks to the subtly-arranged instrumentation: component matured Kurt Wagner burr and also component throat-ravaged bluesguy ( a little bit The Tallest Man On Earth) it’s a voice you could listen to all day. But excellent voice is nothing without great songs, and also Rateliff comes through plenty of ammunition on Falling Faster Than You Can Run.
“Still Trying” is an arresting opener; while Rateliff’s heart-wrenching roars are the highlight, the backing isn’t too shabby either – acoustic guitar and also bass drum battle for the spotlight on a ragged country song, and it sounds authentic, like Rateliff has actually lived what he’s singing. And points gain much better quickly: “I Am” is greatly simply Rateliff and also his guitar, as broaches his isolation singing: “you’ll never know what’s buried there / much less you dig around”. The music swells as he sings the title over and also over, following a comparable pattern to the album opener. But prior to things acquire as well acquainted, Rateliff picks up the pace through a pair of complete band also numbers that can virtually be thought about jaunty, if we were to disregard the lyrics. “Don’t Get Too Close” is fine sufficient and also ticks over nicely prefer a quickaction, however “Laborman” is also much better. Like Wilco at their poppiest, it flies off on crunchy and also bright electrical guitars which belies the lyrical content: “I acquired a feelin’ / a sleepin’ depression / that somebody’s gonna acquire hurt”, sings Rateliff, complied with by “you obtained the harness/so wbelow you gonna drag me now?” You have the right to view a pattern arising here; Rateliff’s stuck somewhere he doesn’t want to be, lonely, but just how does he acquire out of it? Take an additional look at that album cover too – a pair share a bed, an arm reaches out…yet it doesn’t touch the other perchild. It’s basically a visual encapsulation of what’s being sung about.
There are a couple of moments, though, that definitely don’t occupational for me: the jazzy scat of “Right On” feels also uncomfortably Jools-improv, but it’s a rare misstep that’s righted quickly by the drunken tale of “Three Fingers In”. The epic electric storm of “Forgaining Is Believing” leads a trio of excellent closing tracks, finishing through the Lambchop-murmur of the title track. Rateliff’s baritone is exposed and also dusty as he sings “leave me alone/you deserve to see me fall/faster than you can run”, finishing as he began the record – alone and isolated.
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Falling Faster Than You Can Run feels, through the dirt, the shit and the whiskies, and despite the loneliness, like a hard-earned triumph for Nathaniel Rateliff.