Blitzen Trapper simply rocks. I don’t know of another band that can consistently pump out great albums without a disappointing change in style. American Goldwing picks up right where Destroyer of the Void and Furr leave off. As always, the album offers a bit of everything. There is a cornucopia of sound; banjos, 70’s style synthesizers, and blaring harmonicas. You will nod your head to the guitar licks and then close your eyes in appreciation of all the beautiful southern melody.
The album doesn’t skip a beat, opening loudly with the riff-heavy “Mind Find It Cheap.” But if you’re like me, you stay for Blitzen Trapper’s ability to master the folk-ballad. I’m referring to songs like “Black River Killer” and “Lady on the Water;” ones that highlight Eric Earley’s raspy songwriting. His voice is the unclaimed love child of Bob Dylan and Tom Petty, and his lyrics always tell a tale. Pay attention to his rhyming pattern. He truly is a word wizard.
One addition that is unique to American Goldwing is its overall “country” feel. I am of course referring to the use of a slide guitar in many of the tracks. Whether you like it or not, this gives a few of the songs a “sing along” vibe. If you’re not a fan, simply avoid “Love the Way You Walk Away” and “Taking It Easy Too Long.” However, I believe you will miss out on the diverse experience that is Blitzen Trapper. Track to track, their albums contain more variety than most discographies. American Goldwing is no different.