Few musicians burdened by the rockabilly yolk manage to transcend it’s implicit limitations, yet local veteran James Intveld has done precisely that. With a extensive track record marked by impressive highs (just get a load of his ace current Have Faith CD) and punishing doses of tragedy (the 1985 death of his brother, who went down in then-bosses Ricky Nelson’s defective DC 3), Intveld’s ceaseless quest, marked by a striking mixture of raw talent and quiet dignity, has allowed the singer-guitarist to attain a level where genuine contemporary expression and honor for country music tradition co-exist as a complementary, natural whole. That’s a hell of balancing act, but Intveld, with his coolly alluring image, low key presentation and high-voltage technical mastery, always makes it look easy. Ultimately, Intveld is driven more by the demanding honky-tonk sacrament then his own ambition, and it’s that unusual surrender of self which allows him to so thoroughly inhabit his chosen musical realm. Long story short: the guy kicks ass.

Sat., Nov. 15, 2008

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