Tim Lee 3

Raucous Americanus

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Since going solo with 1988's What Time Will Tell, Tim Lee has maintained the rockin' Southern power pop-folk edge that he and Bobby Sutliff's Mississippi band the Windbreakers established on albums like 1985's Terminal. These days he collaborates with his missus of 29 years, Susan Bauer Lee, and with both writing and singing, they have enough polished material for a 21-song blowout. Most double LPs are "sprawling," but this isn't; it's focused on tough, catchy, old-fashioned roots rock, with Southern blues and R&B flavors as befits their Knoxville, Tennessee base (even if Bauer nods to the Kinks on "Good Times"). With drummer Matt Honkonen holding down the big beat, "What I Have Not Got," "Bullets in the Barn," and the blues harmonica-wailing "Broken Line Fever" typify catchy stompers, with Lee's inventive guitar runs and shades elevating them well beyond the trad 'n' trodden. Windbreakers producer Mitch Easter cameos on guitar and records and mixes a third of this.

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