Zoellner’s fifth album gets a little schmaltzy here and there (see “I Love You I’m Sorry” and “Running Is the Hardest Part,” specifically), but who doesn’t crank “Don’t Stop Believin’” every once in a while? Embrace it, and “Lean On” will hug you right back with the title track’s rich guitar tone that’s locked in a waltz with a wafting organ. Eventually, that guitar lifts high in the mix for a triumphant solo at which Duane Allman surely would’ve grinned and nodded.
“The Arsonist” is a washed-up-so-now-I’m-sitting-here-drinking, sad-sap country song informed by Zoellner’s work as a side player with Cross Canadian Ragweed, Jason Boland & the Stragglers and others. “Golden Rule” takes a rare dark turn, signaled by some reggae guitars, but “The City” returns the disc to its rocking, Tom Petty-esque foundation.
The band will play a CD-release show Nov. 19 at The Treehouse, 1738 S. Boston in Tulsa. For more information, visit philipzoellner.com. —Matt Carney