POPS STA­PLES

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - MUSIC REVIEWS - JIM CAR­ROLL

Don’t Lose This

★★★★

Anti

It has taken some time for this last post from Roebuck “Pops” Sta­ples to ap­pear. Recorded in the 18 months be­fore his death in 2000,

Don’t Lose This is a right­eous rub of blues, coun­try and gospel, the flavours most as­so­ci­ated with the Sta­ple Singers king­pin. The al­bum lay un­fin­ished for a few years be­fore his daugh­ter Mavis en­listed the help of Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, who stripped away the ex­cess mu­si­cal bag­gage to bring the voice and gui­tar-play­ing, the real strengths, to the fore. As Sta­ples’ voice re­de­fines songs such as Got to Serve Some­body, No­body’s Fault But Mine and Some­body Was Watch­ing, the am­bi­ence is emo­tional, oc­ca­sion­ally elated and glo­ri­ously punchy. Through­out, it’s that fan­tas­tic, stri­dent voice, re­flect­ing the con­vic­tion of a man who prob­a­bly knows the end is near, which is the bold­est, bright­est colour here. anti.com

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