My Morning Jacket's "Evil Urges"

I've never fully "gotten" My Morning Jacket. Sure, I hear the resemblance to Neil Young (who's one of my favorite artists of all-time), but I've always found Jim James' overreaching vocal delivery to be too extreme and too narrow. I remember buying At Dawn and not understanding the almost universal praise being spouted by nearly every music fan I knew. I subsequently passed on It Still Moves, but returned for Z, which had more staying power than any MMJ record I'd heard prior. But still, there just wasn't enough. I even coaxed myself into seeing them on New Years Eve at The Fillmore a few years back. I left the show early.

And then came the June 10 release of Evil Urges. The reviews have been extremely mixed, but a few trusted friends were adamant that I spend some time with this record. Reluctantly, last week I spent one afternoon listening front-to-back. About thirty minutes later, I found myself returning. And a number of times over the weekend. As I stepped onto the bus this morning, I absolutely had to hear "Highly Suspicious" and "I'm Amazed". They were the perfect openers to a Monday morning. I was literally dancing on the 21.

This afternoon I actually took it a step further and picked up a ticket to their mid-September show at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley. Based on what I'm hearing on this new record, there's little chance that I'll be departing early.