Eric Hisaw 'Ghost Stories' Self-Release

This is roots rock as we know it, and love it. A mix of country, blues, rock and more. Hisaw is another of the breed of singer, songwriter, guitarist who deliver something that has the edge, the sense of life lived, roads travelled and lessons unlearnt. Openly produced by Hisaw it uses his tight band of bass/keyboard player Ron Flynt and Vicente Rodriguez on drums. Guests include Lloyd Maines on steel and dobro on for tracks, giving them that extra country ingredient. Chrissy Flatt adds her vocals to five of the ten tracks and Bracken Hale sings on one more. The sound is robust and driving, with a live in the studio feel that is perfect for Hisaw's self-written tales of small towns, big dreams, long hours and hard roads. He can be tender too, as on the closing song Sleep but he can ramp it up too as he does here on the Stones-ish Johnston County, California and the rhythmic pulse of Don't Live There Anymore. He can be reflective about life and place as with the opening title track. Payphone and The Love She Wants have some effective pedal steel to underpin their sense of loss and need. Throughout Hisaw is a strong and confident vocalist who handles the deliver of these emotions with ease and conviction. And while there is nothing here that hasn't been heard here before he can hold his head up in the company of renowned and esteemed peers like Joe Ely and Dave Alvin, Simply put this is an album that plays well, keeps your attention, makes you feel good throughout it's ten tracks and that, these days, is something to be happy with. These ghost (and life) stories are worth retelling.