Singer-songwriter Slaid Cleaves third record proves once and for all that you don't have to be Texas-born to make pure Texas music. The Maine native's last record, 2000's Broke Down
, was hailed by the Austin Chronicle
as “the first great Texas album of the 21st
century.” Difficult as that particular accolade might be to eclipse, Cleaves has done it with Wishbones
. Lyrically striking and a writer of visceral, ironic melodies, Cleaves is a near-perfect combination of Robert Earl Keen and Lyle Lovett. Four years between albums allowed Cleaves to go from critics' darling to trustworthy songwriter, and the result rages.