Gurf Morlix Stares Into the Abyss

An Americana stalwart confronts loss and dread.

Gurf Morlix
Impossible Blue
Rootball

Though he’s hardly unknown, Austin’s Gurf Morlix enjoys far less acclaim than his talent merits. On his tenth (!) solo album, the rueful bard and subtle guitar virtuoso offers another haunting helping of his dusty Americana, tempering eloquent, heartrending observations on life’s trials with mordant humor and a heap of empathy to ease the pain. “Your breath smells like expensive wine/But your kisses taste a little like turpentine,” Morlix murmurs in the sleepy toe-tapper “Turpentine,” his weary-yet-unbowed voice exuding a sense of cosmic dread; he ponders “desperation and the damage done” on the gentle “Backbeat of the Dispossessed,” reflecting on the loss of an old friend. But “Impossible Blue” is the opposite of a downer—like the great blues artists, Gurf Morlix can look into the abyss without taking the plunge, affirming the resilience of the human spirit, however rocky things get at times. 

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate