Singer/songwriter Matthew Houck of Phosphorescent infamy has carried the unfortunate "poor man's Will Oldham" tag from Athens, Georgia, to his Bed-Stuy neighbourhood in Brooklyn. Although he might not completely shake it with this after-hours love letter to Willie Nelson - a clever rejoinder to Nelson's own heartfelt Lefty Frizzell homage, To Lefty - the appropriately hungover honky-tonk renditions of Nelson's lesser-known 70s bar closers could introduce Phosphorescent to a whole new audience who know not of Bonnie Prince Billy.
The Alabama-born Houck knows his way around this music well enough to walk the fine line between respect and reverence as he delivers impassioned readings of Can I Sleep In Your Arms and Too Sick To Pray and kicks out a freewheeling rip through I Gotta Get Drunk with the appropriate tinge of self-loathing. Best of all, he sounds like no one but Matthew Houck throughout.
Top track: Heartaches Of A Fool