Andy Hackbarth review…October 7, 2015…





Andy Hackbarth was raised in the Colorado Rockies region, and his earliest influences leaned toward traditional folk and classical music.  He studied classical guitar at the Aspen Music School, and has used his skills and knowledge of folk to experiment with electrified folk music.  The result is his latest set, “Panorama Motel,” a seven-cut affair that shows his versatility as a writer and musician.

Adding to the mix is the fact that these cuts were written following a difficult break-up, and one can feel what he was going through as you listen.  Andy is on vocals, guitar, and keys, and uses dobro, violin, and upright bass from other band members to achieve the desired sounds.

As with most relationships, this one starts out full of youthful passion and eternal hope, and the opening cut finds Andy’s “got the Mountains, and I got the girl” for a cool weekend getaway.  He continues in this vein with “I good a good, pretty woman by my side,” and “Isn’t That Enough.”  The first sign that things are about to falter is when Andy begs of her, “Don’t Say you’re running down a dead-end road with me.”

Pretty soon, he’s got a room down at the “Panorama Motel,” and is “missing you like Hell.”  Seems that his only friends are “the whores in the hall” and “this ole guitar,” which breaks off a lengthy, snarling solo at the bridge.  The set closes with the shimmering, haunting “Oceans,” punctuated by unique, multi-layered vocals and sparse instrumentation.

Sometimes it takes some pain to spawn a period of fine creativity from an artist.  Such is the case with Andy Hackbarth down at the “Panorama Motel.”  Until next time…Sheryl and Don Crow, The Nashville Blues Society.




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