State of Grace

The Holmes Brothers. Alligator.


On its 10th album, this durable trio recalls the era when soul seceded from gospel music. But don’t expect nostalgia, as the wailing voices of Wendell and Sherman Holmes, plus Popsy Dixon, bring an electrifying edge to bluesy original material and turn familiar songs upside down. A leisurely cover of “I Want You to Want Me” reveals the desperation hidden in Cheap Trick’s 1978 power-pop standard; Nick Lowe’s wistful “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding?” becomes a rousing manifesto of hope. Although guests Rosanne Cash, Joan Osborne, and Levon Helm add marquee appeal, the Holmes Brothers are a righteous thrill all by themselves.

IT'S TIME TO TALK ABOUT MEDIA BIAS

We believe that journalism needs to stand for something right now. That the press is the enemy of secrecy and corruption. That reporting without a sense of right and wrong only helps liars and propagandists succeed. And that we're in this fight for the long haul.

So we're hoping to raise $30,000 in new monthly donations this fall. Read our argument for journalism that is fair and accurate and stands for something—and join us with a tax-deductible monthly donation (or make a one-time gift) if you agree.

  • Jon Young is a contributing writer for Mother Jones. For more of his stories, click here.