The music press loves to package Son Volt in all kinds of cute ways - alternative country, y'allternative, roots rock, and Americana are the most popular, I think. Whatever. Basically, it's just good rock-tinged country that is much more interesting than most of the blithering garbage spewed forth from the Nashville country machine. Anyhow, the core members of Son Volt practically invented the genre in their former band called 'Uncle Tupelo'. Their first two albums were more acoustic, but their latest is a bit "meatier", but equally nice.
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