Blues Revue: Gospel Train Coming
Nashville's Gypsy Carns continues his evangelical mission in fiery, heartfelt fashion on Gospel Train Coming (Trailer Trash Music 06). There's no mistaking Carns' devotion and passion as he delivers Blind Willie Johnson's "God Don't Never Change," Fred McDowell's "Bye & Bye Goin' To See the King," Rev. Edward W. Clayborn's "Your Enemy Cannot Harm You," and Son House's "John the Revelator," with a more delicate turn on Rev. Pearly Brown's "Oh, What a Morning." His own songs extend the tradition: The shuffling "Satan Don't Pay My Bills" offers the sincere testimony of a saved man, while "Prayin' Blues" plays off Robert Johnson's "Crossroad Blues," advising "Don't go down to the crossroads /Many men have come and gone / They say you meet the devil / Sell your soul and move on." (A stunning version of Johnson's "Preachin' Blues" is here, too.) Insistent rhythms, slashing resonator guitar, and shouted vocals dominate this solo effort. All who hear it will take notice.