Ruston Kelly – Dying Star

Album Review | Rounder Records | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 4/5

There’s something of a buzz going around town at the moment in anticipation of South Carolina-born, Nashville-based Ruston Kelly’s debut full-length album release and UK tour, which are both now very much upon us. Not only does Dying Star boast a lead track “Jericho”, a first single release “Mockingbird”, a video release “Big Brown Bus”, but also, none of these are indeed the title track, so already we have four good things to think about. The album is also released on one of America’s most cherished Americana and Bluegrass labels. If Robbie Robertson and Co chose to employ a ‘father figure’ in the band (Garth Hudson), then Kelly goes one step further and has his actual father and mentor Tim ‘TK’ Kelly in the band, taking care of pedal steel duties, one of the album’s strong points. The album follows Kelly’s initial EP release Halloween, released last April and continues to showcase a very promising new talent. Co-produced by Kelly and Jarrad K and recorded in El Paso, Texas, the album forms a strong initial statement, which will serve Kelly and his band throughout their imminent tour of the UK.