Undivided Heart & Soul
Label: New West Records
On Undivided Heart & Soul, JD McPherson's heart still belongs to '50s rock 'n' roll. On song after song his rollicking twang and romantically tragic yelp evoke images of big-finned cars and poodle skirts. Yet the Oklahoman also makes key tweaks in the rhythm department. Both "Desperate Love" and The Black Keys-flavored "Lucky Penny" ride massive beats leaning on glam rock's hypnotic boot stomp. Yet even more radical is the sleek, throbbing "On the Lips," a departure on every conceivable level: Abandoning rockabilly altogether, he dives deep into 21st-century indie built from dream-rock guitars and a crisp, new wave-like pulse. The track proves that, in addition to being a genius revivalist, McPherson is a thoroughly original modern rocker as well.