Thursday, July 23, 2009

Caleb Stine: Eyes So Strong and Clean

Baltimore's musical playground is home to all kinds of thoughts and sounds. When the concrete landscape of the inner city feels to be closing in, most turn to local country ambassador Caleb Stine.

Caleb Stine has just released his first solo record, after already putting out one with the Brakemen and one with local rapper Saleem. Eyes So Strong and Clean is his most fulfilling release to date. The songwriting is at the forefront, telling stories of self inspiration in an always hectic world.

While this album is heavily steeped in the rootsy Americana we've come to expect, there's a hefty amount of rock and roll involved. Caleb Stine credits his new guitar for this, an Epiphone Dot with Burstberry pickups. His wistful acoustic tones are still present throughout, but jams like "Rome" and "Right Where It Is" are beefed up a bit.

But, the highlight of this record is his true and natural craft of folk songs. Paired up with his distinctive southern croon, this is modern country at its best. His vocals are crisper than ever, putting any Kenny Chesney or Tim McGraw-type to utter shame.

Most can relate to his tales of boozing and relationship woes, classic folk themes that are even familiar when stuck in traffic on Lombard. When illustrating his touring and travels, its easy to imagine being along for the ride. If you've been needing to fill a void in your country music catalog since Ryan Adams started to suck, Caleb Stine is your man.

You can catch him play at the Golden West this Sunday the 26th. The show is at 10, and also features These United States and Paul Masson.

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