Richmond Fontaine: We Used To Think The Freeway Sounded Like A River (Decor, 2009)
At first, I was actually a little bit dissapointed with this new album by Richmond Fontaine. Then one night I was listening to this with headphones half asleep in a sorry state of mind and suddenly I was wholeheartedly hooked into the lives of the people in the songs. And then when Willy Vlautin started singing the words “Maybe we were both born blue” in such a perfect way, it was hard to keep the tears away. The words drifted deeper than any doctor could reach and healed more than any army of Harvard shrinks ever could. Willy Vlautin has also written two great novels (especially Northline is wonderful) and he is such a great writer when it comes to telling stories about kindhearted people whose lives might be totally fucked up, but who can still soldier on one way or another (ok, there are some real arseholes in his stories as well, but even they are not presented as generally bad people. There’s some kind understanding towards them and their unjustified actions). The thing that striked me so hard with Maybe We Were Both Born Blue was that I could see myself singing it and I could see the wonderful characters of Willy’s novel Northline singing it. It just perfectly captured the way I felt at that given time and the way I feel about Richmond Fontaine in general. After that I seriously fell in love with the album.