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Fred Eaglesmith loves the road. The fiercely independent Canadian singer/songwriter's 16th album listens like a stagecoach trip down Route 66, taking its own sweet time in order to sniff out every corner like an Old West Canterbury Tales. The Springsteen-esque opener, "18 Wheels," follows the plight of a lovelorn truckdriver trying to fight the urge to plead his way back into the arms of his estranged lover. It's a fitting start for Milly's Cafe, a sparse and determined collection of stories that refuses to ever break into a gallop -- even the rolling title cut, a Bonnie & Clyde-inspired tale of guns and redemption, barely achieves midtempo. Still, it's an affecting album that uses the space allotted to it as a strength. The languid "Summer Is Over" is all Ferris wheels and small-town lemonade, while the heartbreaking "Rocky," which follows the correspondence between two weathered and ailing cowboys withering away in separate retirement homes, keeps reality clearly in check. It's a road-trip record in the classic sense, and one that's got a confection for whatever mood you may find yourself in.
Performance CreditsFred Eaglesmith Primary Artist,Banjo,Guitar,Piano,Cello,Vocals,Melodica,Morin Khuur
Scott Merritt Guitar,Drums
Dan Walsh Dobro,Lap Steel Guitar,Guitar (Baritone)
Willie P. Bennett Harmonica,Mandolin,Background Vocals
Kori Heppner Drums
Luke Stackhouse Bass
Technical CreditsFred Eaglesmith Composer,Engineer
Kori Heppner Engineer
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This is the best Fred cd in awhile. Much better than Dusty. Some really great songs on this disc. I think The Rains is a classic Fred song. I don't really know what the reviewer was talking about this being a road album - except that Fred is always touring somewhere. See Fred live and you will understand why there are fredheads everywhere. And go to his website and order his early records they dont sell on B&N. Drive in Movie is one of my all time favorite cd's