Nashville, Vol. 1: Tear the Woodpile Down

[Sugar Hill]

Over the course of his four decades in Nashville, Marty Stuart has transformed from 13-year-old bluegrass prodigy to radio hit-maker and finally elder statesman. He’s one of the genre’s protectors now, amassing a museum’s worth of memorabilia, hosting his own TV variety show and championing a sound that’s all but vanished from mainstream country. Nashville, Vol. 1: Tear the Woodpile Down pays tribute to the traditional music of the ’60s and early ’70s without ever sounding stale. Thanks must go in part to Stuart’s band, the Fabulous Superlatives, who are firmly on point throughout the record (especially the breakneck instrumental “Hollywood Boogie”). Covers like “Picture From Life’s Other Side,” recorded with Hank Williams III, fit comfortably next to well-written originals like “Truck Drivers’ Blues,” reminiscent of Del Reeves’ trucker hits, and “A Matter of Time,” a pedal-steel-laden heartbreaker that sounds as though it’s been marinating in tears and spilled whiskey. –Juli Thanki

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