Album Review: Finds The Present Tense by Gurf Morlix
Very Good, Based on 4 Critics
NOW Magazine - 80 Based on rating 4/5
American producer and multi-instrumentalist Gurf Morlix has the coolest name, probably because he chose it himself after dreaming it up when he was a young kid. (True story.) He's best known as a sideman for such folk luminaries as Lucinda Williams, but he's released a series of solo album over the past dozen years. His latest is a beautifully produced, rainy-day folk-and-blues album that builds up from opening murder ballad My Life's Been Taken to the crunchy B3 Hammond-drenched rhyming blues rock of Present Tense without ever rushing.
Brian Wilson used to look for good vibrations. That was the sixties. Times have changed. Gurf Morlix lives in the present, where life is tense. Every day the headlines ring with new traumas. Morlix feels heavy vibrations. Unfortunately, Morlix doesn’t really explain why. He notes that there is ….
On his first all-original album since 2009, the Austin, TX legend reaffirms his position as one of Americana's most painfully honest singer-songwriters. Setting a heavy mood with opening track "My Life's Been Taken," Morlix sticks with it through the majority of the ensuing nine songs, painting bleak portraits of desperate men chasing love and money while on the run from past mistakes. But as a snapshot of a segment of the wider population, Finds The Present Tense is surely accurate.
In the last couple years, Gurf Morlix cut an entire disc of songs written by his friend Blaze Foley and produced Ray Wylie Hubbard's The Grifter's Hymnal. The local guitarist's first album of new material in four years, Finds the Present Tense spans the styles of those co-conspirators with results both hypnotic and provocative. Marrying Foley's brittle poetry to Hubbard's muddy grooves, Morlix creates a sense of foreboding far removed from any singer-songwriter platitudes.