Though three people are listed as being part of Saw Wheel, this album sounds more like a one man band: acoustic guitar, some harmonica when no one’s singing, and very basic percussion. The vocals are gruff and heartfelt, singing lyrics about hopping trains, drinking too much, trying to find some kind of hope in life, and wallowing in a doomed working class. It’s kinda like an acoustic Avail album with one of the Hot Water Music guys singing. There’s even a cover of Avail’s “Lombardy Street.” Saw Wheel definitely wear their influences on their sleeve, but it’s still a solid album.
–sean (Hill Billy Stew)