Willard Grant Conspiracy: Untethered review – Potent and brilliant swansongs

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Artist: Willard Grant Conspiracy
Genre: Country
Label: Loose

Posthumous albums are tricky affairs to say the very least, varying wildly from the good, the bad and the downright ugly. Jeff Buckley's Sketches by my Sweetheart the Drunk and Closer by Joy Division are exceptions rather than the rule.

This this very late 2018 release will be the 11th and final William Grant Conspiracy (WGC) following the untimely death at 59 of Robert Fisher, the band's founding member and front man, in February, 2017, following a battle with cancer.  Fisher anchored the cult Americana band since 1995, producing a fine back catalogue of minimal alt-country.

Opening with the oddball screeching and growling of Hideous Beast, Untethered is a surprisingly cohesive and complete collection, which Fisher more or less completed before his death. Turns is a terrific and typical WGC song, and the album is predominantly in this soft and soothing vein, which makes it all the more poignant and sad a listen.

The strings on Chasing Rabbits are warped and heartbreaking, and the divinely titled Let the Storm Be Your Pilot richly deserves anybody's attention.

All good things must come to an end, and at least Robert Fisher is assured some kind of immortality thanks to the potency and brilliance of his timeless music.