Aug 1, 2017

Single Review: Chris Stapleton "Broken Halos"

by Jonny Brick

What do you say about the man about whom everything has already been said? Chris is, along with Morgane adding gentle harmonic colors, an act who is outstanding in his field; one look at him and you’d think his profession was standing out in a field.
This is the correct choice of song to send to radio. The song can work with any arrangement: more organ, thrashier electric guitar, unaccompanied as if in a church solo. Instead, the drum thwacks on the 2 and the 4, the acoustic is strummed as succinctly as possible and the five bars which introduce a new chord offer brief respite.

The image of ‘wings that used to fly’ will stand out on the radio for sure, where it’s all things carnal and earthy. Jesus gets a namecheck too. More importantly he listener believes Chris has seen his share of people cut down or who have moved on, belonging ‘to the by and by’. He is philosophical in the way Dylan is or Johnny Cash used to be: ‘We’re not meant to know the answers,’ he sings before the final chorus.

Kentucky should be so proud to have given birth to a man who has taken the song of the South – grit and gravel, soul and saviours – into many homes. The figures don’t lie, nor does Trigger, who reckons more of a song and dance should be made about two platinum albums from a man who seems like country’s version of Dave Grohl: niceness with an electric guitar.


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