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Lukas Nelson & Promise Of The Real - Lukas Nelson & Promise Of...album review

Chip off the old block

Lukas Nelson & Promise Of The Real - Lukas Nelson & Promise Of The Real album review

The elephant in the room: yes, Lukas does sound uncannily like a young version of his old man Willie, and he has friends in high places, having backed Neil Young and grown up around country royalty. But this isn’t about nepotism, it’s grand music in the genes.

From the opening Set Me Down Like A Cloud, with vivid turns of tone and crisp phrasing blown along by Lucius’ singers Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig, you’re cast into a selection of high-class material.

While it wouldn’t be true to say that Promise Of The Real don’t owe nobody nuthin’ – Die Alone is southern groove in the JJ Cale style, and Just Outside Of Austin is a delicious rewrite of MOR classic Gentle On My Mind – these kids have balls.

Lady Gaga adds majestic soul diva clout to Find Yourself, Nelson proves to be a sterling guitarist and the whole thing is hellacious, meaning good.

Max Bell worked for the NME during the golden 70s era before running up and down London’s Fleet Street for The Times and all the other hot-metal dailies. A long stint at the Standard and mags like The Face and GQ kept him honest. Later, Record Collector and Classic Rock called.