Devil Take the Hindmost
James Keyes is a New England based acoustic artist. Devil Take The Hindmost is his second solo record and the follow-up to the critically acclaimed 2010 release Ruminations. Devil... picks up where it's predecessor left off but quickly takes on a life of it's own with a darker and heavier approach. While maintaining a rough course defined by acoustic instruments and loosely based on American folk music, Keyes pushes the boundaries of the genre in unexpected and unique ways on this release. Conscious of tradition but never trapped by it, the music on Devil Take The Hindmost twists and turns through 14 songs against a kaleidoscopic backdrop of highways and dirt roads, old stone walls, ocean storms, marshes and mountains, cold dark nights and early mornings sun rises. Live, Keyes makes his rounds like John Lee Hooker, with just his guitar and stomp box. For this record, the small band accompanying him on certain songs adds a subtle texture to the music. Songs like Ain't Going Down Like That, Sunday Walking and The One's Before are defiant country ballads owing equally to Woody Guthrie and Hank Williams while other songs like Old Rider and Wicked Night kick up one hell of a racket where Keyes sings of his New England like only a native son could do.