Jesse Woods, Get Your Burdens Lifted as reviewed in The Phantom Tollbooth

We might well hear more of Wood’s music in the future.

Get You Burdens Lifted
Artist: Jesse Woods
Label:  Guns In The Sun Records
Release Date: August 6, 2013
Duration:  9 tracks, 28:52

Get Your Burdens Lifted is a well mixed, soft, rich blend of folk and county sounding much like modern day Rickie Nelson. This, the third EP / LP release by Jesse Woods, seems to be setting a norm for the artist. Get Your Burdens Lifted seems to be waiting for a producer(s) to take a stab at making Woods into a new and different country & western based Mat Kearney. Woods seems to have the looks and sound as he has an appearance much like Neal Cassidy of Jack Kerouac fame and sounds like Rickie Nelson reinvented.

“Walk Along Cattle Drives” is country smooth. You can feel yourself bouncing along with slumped, tired shoulders on your trusty steed, waiting solemnly for the trail and the day to end its long sojourn. “Cold Blood” follows with good rhythm and softly echoed voice again putting the listener in the singer’s trance.

Both “Lazerburn” with melodic whistling and rustic percussion as an intro, and later the mournful “Tumbleweeds” nicely add strings to the mix. “Lazerburn” shows the album’s heart with a solid performance musically and lyrically.

The album’s standout, “Danger In The Dancehall”, showcases the slow burn of heart-felt C&W with Wood’s well-phrased vocals. Like much of the album, “Chang Gang” has a dream-like effect on the listener with well matched pace between melody and vocals.

At worst, Get Your Burdens Lifted has a touch of C&W shoe gaze. At best, there is something heart-felt about Woods lyrics and voice, accompanied by well-written melody, which sticks with the listener. With the addition of another standout tune much like “Danger In The Dancehall” or “Lazerburn”, we might well hear more of Wood’s music in the future.

Scott S Mertens