MAKE IT THROUGH–GET ALONG–FALL APART–GOING HOME–PAPER WALLS–WHAT’S THE MATTER WITH THE MILL–ASH AND BONE–ELEPHANT BLUE–BAD BAD WHISKEY–ALWAYS BE IN LOVE WITH YOU–EMPTY BOTTLES (BONUS TRACK)
For Jeff Jensen’s fourth studio album, “Morose Elephant,” he showcases a diverse grouping of seven originals and four standards, using the Ardent Studios in Memphis as well as a host of the Bluff City’s finest musicians to augment his spot-on vocals and passionate, inventive guitar stylings.
This set has a true Memphis feel throughout. The party starts with Jeff’s chicken-pickin over the horn section’s groove as he and Reba Russell spin an uplifting tale about hard times, with the feeling that you’ll always be able to “Make It Through.” Victor Wainwright adds Wurlitzer on this one, too. “Paper Walls” follows a quirky rhythm pattern, and Chris Stephenson’s toy piano adds to the ambience. “Fall Apart” and “Ash And Bone” show Jeff’s softer side with fiddle from Anne Harris on the latter, while the instrumental, “Elephant Blue,” plays to Jeff’s tenacity and versatility on guitar. Eric Hughes’ harp lends a country-blues feel to “Bad Bad Whiskey,” while it’s Gary Allegretto on harp on the set-closing, acoustic, “Empty Bottles,” where Jeff takes a humorous look at life thru the eyes of a man who’s spent one too many nights at “the payday lender down by the interstate–the one with the weekly interest rates!”
We had two favorites–one cover and one original. Jeff and Victor get into a spirited, old-school duet lettin’ the good times roll on “What’s The Matter With The Mill.” And, “I’ll Always Be In Love With You” is a fine jump-blues tune with a solo from darn near everyone in the band.
Jeff Jensen never fails to please his fans, and “Morose Elephant” is no different. Excellent musicianship, solid songs, and a soulful vocalist makes this one sho’ nuff a fine listen! Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow.