The Civil Wars and T Bone Burnett
A Place at the Table – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Rating: 2.5 stars (out of 5)
This isn’t the highly anticipated follow-up to the Civil Wars’ Grammy winning, gold-selling debut, and not even a stop gap release until that comes our way. The acoustic, predominantly instrumental music is every bit a soundtrack with “Long Time Gone” and the closing “Finding North” the only full songs (the former is repeated in a slightly different arrangement). Since it was made to accompany a feature-length documentary on hunger in America, the approach is subdued, atmospheric and even dreary at times. Anything that Burnett touches has his backwoods Americana vibe but even with intriguing titles such as “Barbie at the Bodega” and “I Do Exist,” this is little more than quality background music for doing something else…. like watching the film. The collaboration had the potential to yield so much more that this is a missed opportunity with only two typically well-crafted ballads to whet our appetite for what could have been.