Poetry set to country music
The Holy Ranger tells stories through his music; stories about Americans, Wisconsinites in particular, especially those who ride Harley-Davidson motorcycles. His half-spoken delivery style is reminiscent of rock's Lou Reed (an Andy Warhol protege), and guitarist Mike Hoffman uses rocklike effects for a '60s-style psychedelic feeling.
The Ranger's tales are more poetic than narrative, often with a style evoking the Beat literature of Jack Kerouc or the surrealism of J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle Earth. It's a strange world, full of swirling mists and late-night motorcycle rides, the Ranger creates for us, and it's full of magic.
If the above makes you wonder how this could be a country album, you have a good point. But the Ranger's vocal inflection is decidedly rural, and his band the Blues Rider Band is a tight, crackerjack outfit that can play with any C∧W combo.
True, this is no ordinary album, and the Holy Ranger is no ordinary country artist it definitely is not for the faint of heart. But if you're one of those radicals who loves country music and hates Nashville, you might give the Ranger a listen.
© Copyright Jim Trageser
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