Adam Hill: Them Dirty Roads 

Adam Hill is a stolid-looking man with blonde hair and a handsome voice. The folk musician makes music out of his surroundings, including "things hitting other things." With a CD jacket adorned with dusty vistas, Them Dirty Roads can help slow the busiest of lifestyles. It's the kind of music that inspires strolling in the sunshine, or taking a drive to the coast, the kind that makes unpaved roads enjoyable.

Hill's skill with a twanging acoustic guitar matches perfectly with his honest folk vocals. Hailing from Bellingham, Wash., Them Dirty Roads, Hill's second album incorporates baritone guitar, trumpet, bass, piano, glasses and radio to create a twist on traditional bluegrass. "Fool's Gold" in particular exemplifies how Hill breaks the "singer-songwriter" stereotype with sheer modesty. The piano is light, airy and whimsical, especially when coupled with lyrics such as, "We both had the shakes. / Maybe it was the chocolate."

Conversely, "The River Where She Sleeps" evokes visions of a traveling vocalist stealing the attention of a Western saloon, as Hill pairs piano with homespun fables.

Grab a stiff beverage to accompany the CD; Them Dirty Roads are traveled best in pairs.

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