Reviewed by Jeffrey B. Remz
o say that a Corb Lund show was a rarity in these parts would be an understatement, but with a new disc, "Things That Can't Be Undone," dropping in two days, the Canadian roots/country artist is on the road - south of the border.
Lund lives on a farm in southern Alberta, Canada, near the Montana border, and has achieved popularity in his homeland. He's won Junos, the Canadian equivalent of a Grammy. He plays halls holding a few thousand people, a far cry from the 100 or so enthusiastic fans at this club.
No problem for Lund and band.
Lund's brand of country focuses more on the traditional sounds with sometimes steely guitar, upright bass, occasional lap steel and steady handed drumming. There were rockabilly elements along with rock and a touch of funk on one song anyway.
Perhaps staying true to his roots, a chunk of Lund's themes revolve around western themes of rural life ("This Is My Prairie," "Cows Around") and drinking (the closing song of the regular set, "Rye Whiskey/Time to Switch to Whiskey," "Gonna Shine Up My Boots"). There's a bit of the underbelly to Lund's sometimes bad boy songs ("Bible on the Dash" about how the good book might just save you when stopped by the men in blue).
The rural idea was never as true as on "S Lazy H," the first of three encore songs where Lund came out solo acoustic - a departure from the rest of the 90-minute show - to sing of being a sixth generation farmer on the land.
Lund's backing band is the cutely monikered The Hurtin' Albertans, and they are a sharp backing outfit with Kurt Ciesla on upright bass and Grant Siemens on electric guitar and lap steel. Particular recognition goes to drummer Rob Hooks, who was making his first appearance with the band and had no problem setting the pace. As for regular drummer, Brady Valgardson, he was back home, harvesting his farm. Lund said he was not kidding.
In fact, this was Lund's Boston area gig in at least 10 years, maybe 12. He wasn't sure, but one thing certain was the joy and fun of the evening. No need to wait on that.