Todd Snider, East Nashville Skyline

Andrew Mueller

By Andrew Mueller

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

East Nashville Skyline

Todd Snider
A priority purchase for anyone who cherishes lyrical fizz.

All of Todd Snider's albums should be priority purchases for anyone who cherishes lyrical fizz, but 2004's East Nashville Skyline is the pick of his formidable catalogue. Snider gives the impression of staying in Nashville principally for the ready availability of targets upon which to deposit his baleful bile. He hits them hard and hilariously on "Conservative, Christian, Right-Wing Republican, Straight White American Males." "Nashville," meanwhile, celebrates Snider's idea of the city, i.e. pretty much everything Music Row isn't. Elsewhere, he brings his weatherbeaten wisdom to bear on country mythology on "Alcohol & Pills" and "Play A Train Song," adds to his much-loved repertoire of talking blues epics with "Iron Mike's Main Man's Last Request" — a narration from the perspective of one of Tyson's retainers — and, on "Tillamook County Jail," provokes amazement that it took this long for a country singer to rhyme "Came here on vacation" with "Leaving on probation."