Bucky Halker

Passion Politics Love

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Bucky Halker's Passion Politics Love is a rootsy, alternately rocking and stripped-down effort. The album calls to mind the mid-'90s creative fury of a post-heroin Steve Earle, what with the fiery politics and country-blues of "Democratic Blues" and the stirring acoustic country of "Color Outside the Lines." Halker can also rock out like Earle, as the searing, vindictive "Don't Let the Bastards" and country-rock bounce of "Candy Man" attest. Meanwhile, "Fire and Ice" is an upbeat, melodic roots rock number. Halker is also not afraid to plunge headlong into straight-up honky tonk, as evidenced by the lighthearted "Heaven in Milwaukee." This is top-notch, varied Americana.

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