A Gunslinger Gone Bridge Tender: Jon Rauhouse & Blaine Long LP Review by Taylor John Salvetti

One Day Will Never Come Back by Jon Rauhouse & Blaine Long is someone looking backward and opening the waterways for a safer passage.

You’ll hear a certain tremor in Blaine Long’s vocals, it’s become canonized with this certain style of vocals and poetic delivery. But it feels different here. It’s no surprise that Long’s voice is appropriate—no, crucial—to the pairing of Jon Rauhouse’s instrumentation and work on the pedal steel. Some might hear it as a lonesome instrument. Still, even the likes of Lloyd Green and Jimmy Day (the great steel players of the past) were cutting through up-tempo songs and party favorites just to get to the ones that were slow and low, the ones where pedal steel can do what it does best: weep in an open tuning. 
The instrumentation on One Day Will Never Come Back is Rauhouse waving you down the stream, just having opened the bridge for you and yours to sail safely through. He’s not gone, no, but a fettered few years of quarantine and chemotherapy have put him in a state of obligatory reverie. He’s still making music and touring when he can, but this album feels like a live-in-the-moment manifesto. “I’m 64 and older than Elvis and Jesus,” says Rauhouse on “Thanksgiving.” It’s an ego death, it’s a call to action, it’s that feeling of impending doom that is immediately followed by beautiful acceptance.

“I’m an earthbound angel stuck on this merry-go-round,” sings Long on the lead single, “Hey Babe,” released in October of this year. One can’t help but see the tenderness of existence in these songs. It doesn’t leave you wanting much. The bases are covered, the sun has set over an arid landscape, and this rings true in the final track, “The Queen is Dead.” It’s a low and slow melodic instrumental with a sweeping chamber orchestra, a delicate guitar lead, and a click of snare rim that feels like it’s keeping time for something larger.

One Day Will Never Come Back is an album of accumulation. It feels like time and life, bundled into seven tracks, like we’re all sitting at the same table, a fine meal shared between friends. Our wish is that there could be more: more friends, more food, more time, and more life. But we can only get so lucky.
Jon Rauhouse & Blaine Long One Day Will Never Come Back will be released by Fort Lowell Records on Friday, November 17th.  PRESAVE / LISTEN NOW: https://orcd.co/flr065

Leave a comment