Labor Against Waste
There is a fearless quality to the music of new ANTI- signing Christopher Paul Stelling. A voice that sounds both old and young, an effortless yet intricate finger-picking guitar style, and lyrics that are dramatic and intensely confessional. It's a sound that channels the restless spirit of a young man who left home to travel the country, writing haunting and impassioned songs formed by endless nights alone on stage with a guitar, playing to packed houses, other times to nearly empty rooms. Stelling estimates that he's played over four hundred shows in just the past three years. It places him within a longstanding tradition that serves to build both character and vision. Labor Against Waste features Stelling's astonishing guitar work, a melodic finger-picking style influenced in large part by blues legends such as Skip James and Mississippi John, masters like John Fahey, and banjo greats Dock Boggs and Roscoe Holcomb. On top of this soars Stelling's voice, a resonant baritone that calls to mind classic troubadours from Tim Hardin to Steve Earle. Accompanied by an ensemble of stomps, claps, French horn, flugelhorn, kettle drums, string quartet, and a chorus comprised of members from the Low Anthem, in whose studio Stelling recorded the album, Labor Against Waste is the opening statement in what should be a long and storied career.
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