Home Read Robert Randolph & The Family Band | Brighter Days

Robert Randolph & The Family Band | Brighter Days

The sacred steel virtuoso makes a heavenly return to form on his sixth studio set.

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WHO IS HE? The pedal steel guitar virtuoso who got his start playing sacred steel gospel music in New Jersey churches before breaking through to a larger audience with more rocking secular material.

WHAT IS THIS? His sixth studio album, the followup to his Grammy-nominated 2017 outing Got Soul — and his first collaboration with superstar Nashville producer Dave Cobb, whose client list includes Jason Isbell, Chris Stapleton and Sturgill Simpson.

WHAT DOES IT SOUND LIKE? A heavenly return to form. Randolph has never completely abandoned gospel music, but this disc finds him moving a little closer to his spiritual beginnings.

WHAT WOULD BE A BETTER TITLE FOR THIS ALBUM? Preaching to the Choir Again.

HOW SHOULD I LISTEN TO IT? During Sunday brunch — or while practising whatever form of worship you choose.

WHAT 10 WORDS DESCRIBE IT? Passionate, spiritual, devoted, earnest, righteous, uplifting, exuberant, grounded, searing, rich.

WHAT ARE THE BEST SONGS? On the spiritual side, try the rousing Don’t Fight It and the soulful Simple Man. On the secular tip, go for the aggressive Cut Em Loose and the funky Second Hand Man. And if you just want to hear his stellar, stunning guitar work, drop the needle anywhere.

WHAT WILL MY FRIENDS AND FAMILY SAY? ‘Does anybody else feel the sudden urge to go to a service?’

HOW OFTEN WILL I LISTEN TO THIS? How often do you feel in need of musical salvation?

IF THIS ALBUM WERE A DRINK, WHAT DRINK WOULD IT BE? Communion wine. With a holy water chaser.

SHOULD I BUY, STREAM OR STEAL IT? Put a donation in the plate.