Cass McCombs A Folk Set Apart on LP + Download w/ Bonus Tracks
Cass McCombs' new anthology, A Folk Set Apart, is subtitled Rarities, B-Sides & Space Junk, Etc. which is, on the surface, true but it's so much more than that. It's an alternate retelling of the last decade and a half of an enigmatic career built on immaculate songwriting but short on "breakthrough success." While it contains none of McCombs' better known songs from his seven full-lengths, he would have you believe this is his favorite album.
The compilation starts off with the very first song to be released by McCombs, "I Cannot Lie" and, as is the case with many of the singer/songwriter's gems, is told in the first person. Often, the temptation is to assume the autobiographical with McCombs and long-time fans surely have formed some mental picture of the elusive musician, but to do so would be to proceed at your own risk. McCombs knows his mythology is littered with misdirects, rumors and half truths and quite frankly none of our business.
And McCombs is right, actually. In spite of its compilation status, nineteen tracks in all (11 songs long with 8 digital bonus tracks to square up with the CD version). This very well may be the most compelling album he's released, not because the original albums are lacking in their own charms, but there is something fascinating in the sprawl: chugging lo-fi, downtrodden gems, rambling rave-ups, political anthems, lysergic outtakes, wistful laments and an appropriate bookend on our own decade-long professional relationship with one of the greatest songwriters of the 21st Century. Fare thee well, Cass.
• Career-spanning anthology that pulls together some of McCombs's rarest and most
• 19 tracks in all (11 on LP + 8 bonus digital tracks) all remastered for this
• Includes five unreleased tracks
• Single LP in a gatefold LP jacket, includes a printed inner sleeve and download card