As I look back into the rear view mirror at 2008 at this time of year, like I usually do, I always see a few albums that I have neglected entirely. While I don’t write about everything I like here on ENS, I try to get to as much of it as possible, but even then, there are quite a few things I just miss out on. One album that I missed out on was the debut from The Tallest Man On Earth, released in the middle of 2008.
To listen to this album, titled Shallow Grave, is to hear echoes of several influential folk musicians of America past. Like most folkies, this album borrows quite a bit from Bob Dylan, an action that I no longer get distracted by, and usually appreciate. The song, “The Blizzards Never Seen The Desert Sands” might as well have been sung by Bob Dylan actually, and when I close my eyes and listen to it at times it is. But there is a nice element of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger in the midst of this music as well, complete with minimal production and an imagined dustbowl time period painted in the background.
So imagine my surprise to find out that the voice behind The Tallest Man On Earth comes from Swedish singer Kristian Matsson. Well, so much for that Grapes Of Wrath soundtrack! Even so, it takes nothing away from a beautiful folk album that I’m late to the party to appreciate, but enjoying no less as a results. So, if you come here for recommendations on folk singers, The Tallest Man On Earth should be an immediate choice.