Countrypolitan alive and well and living on Dualtone
The Moon Was Blue is more than just a return to form for the venerable Bare, who’s proven one of the most daring and iconoclastic country artists in the business for more than 40 years. It’s the best record he’s made since his 1981 Rodney Crowell-produced As Is, and it picks up right where he left off, blurring musical boundaries with a casual disdain for convention. From the plaintive title track to the hillbilly Latin of “I Am an Island” and the shattered waltz of “My Heart Cries for You,” Bare’s voice is all leather and butter, the songs transported out of a late-’60s Ray Price session as Daniel Lanois might’ve conducted them. The Moon Was Blue is haunted and heartbroken like any self-respecting country album should be; but quality heartache like this has been a long, lonely time coming.