Cole Thomason: Self-Titled EP

Leah Brzezinski, contributor

 This former children’s choirboy discovered his love for songwriting, guitar and harmonica in 2004 and hasn’t looked back. Thomason hails from the Central Valley, but his first 8-song solo effort has the soul of a seasoned traveler, furtively weaving threads of blues, folk, Americana, and soul into a terrific thigh-slapping road trip soundtrack.

Rambling tunes like “Greeley’s Hell” and “Nighttrain” anchor the slower, bluesy ballads like “Catch the Shift” and “The Doldrums” — with tinges of rowdy darkness and heartbreaking tenderness, the balance is ideal. Cole’s brassy tenor vocals remind me of Axl Rose (in a good way) and the likes of Townes Van Zandt and Willie Nelson.

There’s just something about a good harmonica solo that makes a foot itch for a gas pedal.

 Rating: 10 out of 12 cans of PBR

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