rickenbackergirlsIn the stack of CDs I was sent by a magazine I write for was an album I was already intimately familiar with, Todd May’s ‘Rickenbacker Girls’. I’d like to think that a few kinds words in this magazine might lead to a record sale or two though I’m not sure that’s how it works in 2013. Unfortunately, a few of the reviews I submitted were cut due to space issues, ‘Rickenbacker Girls’ being one of them.

As I’m scrolling through iTunes, trying to make some semblance of a year-end list (I think my theme is going to be “CDs I listened to more than 5 times in 2013”), I stumble upon ‘Rickenbacker Girls’ which will obviously go on that list and then remember that I still have this review that nobody has seen. So, while it’s not in an internationally distributed magazine, here’s what I have to say about Mr. May’s release.

Todd May – Rickenbacker Girls – (Peloton)

As Americana as a mesh trucker hat and flannel shirt, ‘Rickenbacker Girls’ is Todd May’s first solo album as the singer/songwriter has been occupied the last few years writing songs and performing with The Mooncussers, Fort Shame (with ex-Scrawl bassist Sue Harshe) and Lydia Loveless. Songs like the Steve Earle-sounding “Alphabet City” and “Mercy” (think Jay Farrar fronting Wilco) establish May as a peer rather than an imitation and, with the exception of Jason Isbell’s ‘Southeastern’, you’d be hard pressed to find a better album in this genre released this year. High, but worthy, praises for a songwriter who’s finally stepping out from behind a band name and into a spotlight of his own. (www.facebook.com/pelotonrecords)

Listen to ‘Rickenbacker Girls’