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Classic Album Review: Graham Parker | Your Country

The acerbic British singer-songwriter squeezes out a few rootsy sparks.

This came out in 2004 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


The operative word in that title is Country.

For his first album since 2001’s underwhelming Deepcut to Nowhere, veteran singer-songwriter Graham Parker saddles up and heads out south by southwest on his latest studio disc Your Country. This 11-song outing finds the once-angry young man of U.K. post-punk getting in touch with his inner honky-tonker, setting his acerbic wit, snide vocals and troubadourish melodies against twangy guitars, shimmering lap steel lines and honking harmonica. Granted, it’s not entirely new turf for Parker — his earliest albums were far earthier and more soulful than his later new wave hits like Local Girls and Mercury Poisoning — but this 44-minute offering is easily Parker’s rootsiest offering in ages. And his most satisfying. From the slapback rockabilly of Queen of Compromise and the easy, strummy shuffle of The Rest is History to the tear-in-your-beer Lucinda Williams duet Cruel Lips and the bouncy remake of his own Crawling From The Wreckage, Your Country shows Parker is still capable of squeezing out a spark every now and then.