Alberta Cross: Gothic Country with Uplift

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Friday's Pick

  • Song: "Lucy Rider"
  • Artist: Alberta Cross
  • CD: The Thief and the Heartbreaker EP
  • Genre: Country/Folk
Alberta Cross 300

Alberta Cross' "Lucy Rider" sounds a bit like Neil Young haunted by the ghosts of his own demons. courtesy of Alberta Cross hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of Alberta Cross

It's a long way from London to Laurel Canyon, but Alberta Cross seems to have found the portal — or at least a meeting point. The U.K. duo's laidback gospel twang is shrouded in a misty fog that favors long shadows over bright sunshine, and trades the wide-eyed innocence of the '60s for a wearier worldview.

"Lucy Rider," a standout track on the band's debut mini-album The Thief and the Heartbreaker, sounds a bit like Neil Young haunted by the ghosts of his own demons. "Why do we always lose what we love?" Petter Ericson Stakee sings, his voice a mixture of resignation and regret. He's all too aware of his self-destructive tendencies, yet powerless to stop them.

With song titles like "The Devil's All You Ever Had," "Hard Breaks," and "Low Man," The Thief and The Heartbreaker may sound like a downer. But beauty and comfort emerges from the shadows like the first tentative rays of daylight after a long, cold night. It's gothic country, but it's somehow beautiful and uplifting at the same time.

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Thief & the Heartbreaker

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