This afternoon finds me on my way home from NYC on the ole Amtrak NE Regional and while I should be doing some work, train trips always make me reflective and in the mood to listen to music as the cities and landscape slide by the window. I tend to have a certain kind of music that I prefer on the train—typically, acoustic and contemplative. Think Nick Drake, Gillian Welch, Bon Iver or Sun Kil Moon—and if you happen to sing about trains often like say,Tom Rush, that is a little bonus.
Well let’s add José Gonzáles to that list. Gonzáles comes to me by way of the magical Pandora on my acoustic station. He officially hails from
This 2003 album is slow and haunting with little more than double-tracked guitar and voice. As is always the case with me, I love the song that seems simple but ultimately warrants revisiting over and over. And I love the spaces in the music which leave you anticipating the fill. And the fill is beautifully quiet classical guitar that brings a certain tension to the songs as the lyrics float across the guitar line.
Here are two that I think really capture the album, particularly the way in which the songs can be so similar in some ways and so unique in others. I will be curious to see what I think of his second album, which I will surely pick up.
Now back to my window.