Over And Around The Clove

One half of Trummors, David Lerner, is best known for his role as bassist in Ted Leo And The Pharmacists, but his new acoustic duo check in some ways from Leo’s agit-punk. With vocalist Anne Cunningham, Lerner creates an appealingly rustic, Appalachian sound; the simple strumming and sweet-and-sour harmonies are embellished with steel guitar, harmonica and weepy pedal steel, something like an old-fashioned needlepoint sampler set to music (or the gentler moments of the Grateful Dead’s American Beauty). The politics here are personal, and the longing of tunes such as “Odessa” and “Platte Clove Road”—set to familiar chord progressions and melodies—may be the most complex thing about them. An album made for listening while you stare from your back porch (or apartment window) as the sun sets, Over And Around The Clove is the latest proof that the well of traditional American music is truly bottomless.

Ernest Jenning