Small seasonal hire

Black Twig Pickers: Seasonal Hire CD

Small seasonal hire

Black Twig Pickers: Seasonal Hire

America's rising guitar star leads avant-roots jam

The next headline release in Steve Gunn's relentless schedule is a duo album with Kurt Vile, due sprintime. For now, though, this'll do nicely: a hook-up with Virginia's reliably ornery Black Twig Pickers, that finds a common ground we might usefully term pscyhedelic Appalachian. Gunn has collaborated with sundry Twigs before: a sparser "Dive for the Pearl" figured on his 2014 duo LP with frontman Mike Gangloff, while banjoist Nathan Bowles moonlights in Gunn's road band. Old friendships contribute to the good vibes, and an atmosphere that's at once rambunctious and exploratory: "Trailways Ramble," last attempted on Gunn's 2013 solo set, Time Off, is a brackish highlight.

-- John Mulvey, Uncut