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August 11, 2020

City Music

A.S. Coomer

City Music photo

City Music
Kevin Morby
June 16, 2017
Dead Oceans
12 songs 48 mins


After practice, we’re standing on the front porch, smoking, talking shop. I tell Ross about City Music, a Kevin Morby record; I tell him I can’t stop playing the thing. I toss out some comparisons, Lou Reed with crystal clear guitar seems to resonate and he promises to check it out. I tell him it feels like Dylan with The Band; I tell him it just feels right.

My brother always comments on how big the sky is in my little stretch of western Kentucky. We crane our necks and peer at the sickle moon, the unblinking stars. A whippoorwill lives nearby; we’re graced with its nightly singing. I watch a satellite glide soundless above and my mind, a needle skipping, returns to the intro of the eponymous track City Music. The reverb on the snare a pop and fizzy sizzle. The guitars coupling like cranes in the canebrake around the pond out back. The bass a set of buzzed feet dancing with a subdued grace. The singing the yip and cry of the coyotes out on the hill behind the barn.

I hug my bandmates after each practice. I practice patience in the days between rehearsals and gigs. I hum along with that City Music miles outside the light pollution of town. They’ve cancelled my shows, with the band and solo, everyone’s singing the Corona blues, and I’m thankful I’ve got these twelve songs, this shining collection of nocturnes, to help get me through.


Drink: hot black chicory coffee with a spoonful of honey stirred in.