by John Tarpley
While so many new alt-country upstarts have been busy mining genre cliches and dredging up the same old tired twangst, Kevin Gordon has been busy trying to perfect a craft. The Nashville singer/songwriter and graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop inspires a certain awe from sharp-eared purists and musical heavies, to boot. His songs have been recorded by Keith Richards ("Deuce and a Quarter"), Levon Helm and Irma Thomas; his track "Watching the Sun Go Down" was featured prominently on "True Blood," and the 2005 album it was plucked from, the bleak, bracing "o Come Look at the Burning," is as masterfully crafted a piece of 21st century Americana as you'll find. This show marks a rare full band show for Gordon, who brings along a gang of Arkies for the ride, including Joe McMaham, a Dove-winning guitarist from Hot Springs, and bassist Ron Eoff, Fayettevillian and long-time member of The Cate Brothers.'