Randy Steele – “Moccasin Bender”

A joyous rustic Americana reigns supreme on Randy Steele’s reassuring “Moccasin Bender EP”. Playfulness runs free throughout these tracks, courtesy of the wide number of instruments that Randy Steele incorporates within the great scope. Moments of the work recalls Will Oldham’s tremendous heartfelt outpouring of emotion and thoughtful storytelling abilities. The arrangements vary, from a full-on band sound to things that feel much more intimate. By taking on these differing styles, Randy Steele goes for something that becomes very truly real in the best way possible.

Setting the tone for the album is the swinging rhythms of the opener “Mabbitt Springs”. Going for a raw visceral approach the fantastic banjo led “Adam And Rose” takes on a quieter tact, as Randy Steele’s voice positively shines with a radiant warmth. By far the highlight of the collection comes with the freewheeling loose world of “Big Talkin Woman” where everything works in unison. Incorporating country, chamber pop, folk, with a hint of rock all of “Big Talkin Woman” feels akin to going on a long journey courtesy of the fantastic strings and highly articulate lyricism. Presenting fantastic storytelling abilities is the thoughtful “Age Of Ben”. Slowing things down a bit and embracing a summery demeanor “Rummies” has a hint of nostalgia coming into the mix. Everything feels perfectly brought together on the energetic closer “Pretty Little Girl With A Blue Dress On”.

Randy Steele crafts a fantastic, fully-formed world that lives so lived in with the folksy optimism of “Moccasin Bender EP”.


By Conor Murphy