Tom Russell Indians Cowboys Horses Dogs (HighTone) Rating: NNNN
While many people know Tom Russell to be a skilful narrative songwriter in the romantic Southwestern cowboy-poet style, he's also a badass interpretive stylist. On the intimately recorded Indians Cowboys Horses Dogs, Russell demonstrates how he can make songs identified with Bob Dylan and Linda Thompson sound like he's been singing them around campfires his entire adult life. If there are any doubts about whether Russell can do it all, he produced the record and painted the Old West-themed sleeve art. Russell's at his top-dollar best in front of an attentive audience, so check him out with acoustic accomplice Andrew Hardin at Hugh's Room April 6.