by Kelly McCartney (@theKELword) for FolkAlley.com
There’s so much going on in singer/songwriter Jeffrey Foucault’s voice that, if he were singing “Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star,” it would feel like the existential wonderings of a road-worn, world-weary celestial traveler that it is rather than a simple kids’ song. Instead, on ‘Salt As Wolves,’ his fifth album of original compositions, Foucault offers up a collection of blues- and country-tinged tunes that are as gritty and gruff as they are haunted and haunting.
Supported by a band that includes guitarist Bo Ramsey, bassist Jeremy Moses Curtis, drummer Billy Conway, and guest vocalist Caitlin Canty, Foucault bucks and rumbles his way through highways and heartaches — standard fare for the traveling troubadour set. But Foucault’s handling of these tales is both earnest and exquisite. “Des Moines” ambles along, in no rush to get anywhere other than right where it is, setting an easy pace — and a high bar — for all that follows. And all that follows, whether the barroom blues of “Left This Town” or the shuffling sway of “Hurricane Lamp,” delivers on that promise.