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Scotland Barr: All the Great Aviators Agree


All the Great Aviators Agree is the second and newest offering from Scotland Barr and the Slow Drags. I loved their first CD, Legionnaires Disease, but wondered if they would suffer the dreaded sophomore slump with this one. The short answer? No.

Barr is the songwriter and vocalist. He's flanked by the Slow Drags on lead guitar, keyboards, pedal steel, bass and drums. The six-piece band hails from Portland, Ore. While their sound is more alt-country, they claim to borrow from the classics, draw from their contemporaries and cross many borders.

However you care to categorize them, Barr can still turn a phrase with the best of them. The song, "Don't Get So Heavy," includes the lines, "I won't hold out much more / Halfway 'tween suicide / And the liquor store." Barr's voice shows surprising range from low to high as each song demands. The Slow Drags provide a pleasing blend of accompanying harmonies, and they also show their talents on some stellar back-up instrumentation, especially the keyboards and the pedal steel. Overall, the 11 songs on this CD provide 11 more reasons to become a fan if you aren't already.