The Two Tracks “Cheers to Solitude” (Independent, 2020)

‘Cheers to Solitude’ opens with the bouncy, infectious ‘Beautiful’, a song that is a tour across America from the Pacific Redwoods and Pacific ocean on the West Coast, through the deep South to New Orleans and Mississippi, to the mountains of Appalachia.  ‘Beautiful’ encapsulates what makes up the soul of roots music, and at the same time defines the sound of The Two Tracks – a simple, laid-back, breezy, California vibe, the funky Cajun, swamp-foot swing from the Crescent City, a timeless fiddle line born in the mountains, all delivered with a wide-open groove reminiscent of the rollings hills and mountains of their hometown of Sheridan, Wyoming.

Powered by the dual-songwriting talents of Julie Szewc and Dave Huebner, whose voices fit together with an undeniable beauty, their songs are gentle, thoughtful, ruminations on life that use simple pleasures like a glass of whiskey to answer life’s difficult questions.  In ‘Past My Prime’ Huebner reflects on a life passing by, grey hair, a lack of money, and being a burn-out.  They are issues we can all relate to no matter our age, and help make a ‘Cheers to Solitude’ a reflective, personal, journal and exploration for every listener.  The sharp lyrical turn of Szewec and Huebner help drive much of who the band is, but much of the personality of the band comes from Huebner’s unique cello which seamlessly glides from an old-timey fiddle sound to a lush orchestral arrangement in the blink of an eye.

The Two Tracks and ‘Cheers to Solitude’ straddles the thin line between country and roots music and does so with graceful ease.

Straddling the line between country and roots music with graceful ease
7/10

Author: Tim Newby

Author of books, writer of words, enjoyer of good times. Often found barefoot at a festival somewhere. 'Bluegrass in Baltimore: The Hard Drivin' Sound & Its Legacy' (2015), 'Leftover Salmon: Thirty Years of Festival! (2019)

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