Ken Tucker
April 11, 2008 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Trouble In Mind

type
Music
Current Status
In Season
performer
Hayes Carll
genre
Rock, Folk

We gave it an A-

Texas singer-songwriter Hayes Carll makes nouveau-outlaw country, poetic diction delivered with a rasp (a lover who ”likes to lay naked and be gazed upon,” indeed) on Trouble in Mind. His best melodies are honky-tonk lamentations, with detours into banjo-plunking balladry (”Girl Downtown”) and Stones-y rock (”Bad Liver and a Broken Heart”). The creator of one of the year’s best country albums thus far, Carll also covers Tom Waits (”I Don’t Wanna Grow Up”), but his own irreligious doggerel — ”She Left Me for Jesus,” sure to get him shunned in Nashville — beats Waits by a mile. A-
DOWNLOAD THIS: Preview ”She Left Me for Jesus” on Amazon.com

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