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the title was inspired by landes great-grandmother's beau, who ran away to join the rodeo during the great depression. a rodeo theme runs throughout the record as she compares the ups and downs of romance to the rigours of bull riding. "each song is like its own bull," the twenty-eight-year-old deadpans. "each ride its own love-story - you know, trying to hang on to a wild thing isn't always graceful." recorded in landes own studio (saltlands in brooklyn) with regular collaborator, drummer and all-rounder ray rizzo, guitarist josh kaufman and bassist annie nero, the album kicks off with 'young girl', which ponders gender stereotyping - competitive boys, jealous girls - over a reductive and distorted keyboard riff. the haunting 'money in the bank' marries down-home hippie wisdom ('the night before you die, what are you gonna buy?') to a glorious chorus bolstered by a wistful french horn. landes even drums on an unlikely cover of margo guryan's already unlikely 'love', a 1968 collision of cool jazz and nascent psychedelia. rizzo's idiosyncratic harmonica style ('kinda cloudy - the opposite of ethereal') boosts the quirky 'wandering eye', a rare song that combines sex and travel without causing offence, while 'little miss holiday' imagines a conversation between jodie foster and the teenage hooker that inspired her character in scorsese's unhinged 'taxi driver.' it's tender rather than bleak. 'brighton' is a tribute to a magical day in that great southern (english) town, yet it could hardly sound more american, appalachian even. "i hope i captured it in the song," she says. her brighton though is more romantic than the resort us britons know, already a fond memory. by the album's conclusion, the wobbly wedding march of 'all dressed in white', you'll probably be thinking of giving love a try. even if it does hurt when you fall off.
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