Neal & Leandra

Stranger to My Kin

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Neal Hagberg's songs are filled with nice details. Whether it's a train rolling over Lincoln's back or the old ladies and stale air of a Memphis Greyhound station, these tunes create a palpable sense of place. As interpreted in Hagberg's own no-nonsense baritone or Leandra Peak's clear alto, Hagberg is host to sweet, emotional tales everyone can understand. While the songs explore memory, often with a tinge of regret, they never sink into sentimentality. John Scherf's spare production places the songs in nice aural landscapes, from the gentle piano of "Rich" to the blue swagger of "First Best Friend."

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