Jon Langford – Nashville Radio…

Books Reviews Jon Langford
Jon Langford – Nashville Radio…

Dazzling gallery of the slaughtered and the demons who feast on them

Jon Langford, the Ernest Tubb of troubador artists, waits for daybreak at Tasty Town with the window-booth regulars.

It’s been a long, unbridled wait, through beds and bottles, through Thatcher, Reagan, Bushes, cronies, Mekons and Waco Brothers. Langford has all their numbers, to sing, to paint by. His heart, like Hank’s or Loretta’s, is in the right place, and just as shot through with one-way arrows. His mouth is full of the chicken that crossed to the sunny side of the road, making us laugh ’til our lungs strained. Nashville Radio is a dazzling gallery of the slaughtered and the demons who feast on them; Langford heaves it all into this book—paintings, cocooned ?sts, autobiographical writing, a companion CD and singalong lyrics—but the chewing sound won’t stop. The camp?res fueled by Langford’s country icons, cowboys and cowgirls in ?ames, caskets chock with contracts—they’re as gorgeous as the sight of one’s own illuminated bones in the mirror.

Crawling out of the wrong end of a nightmare or dancing with death in dollar dress, Nashville Radio spills enough of your mama ’n’ daddy’s blood to make you doubt the West is history—or that this is even close to the end of the line.

[Ed. Note: Jon Langford is a Paste contributor.]

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