It is wonderful to see an artist morph into his true self. Andy Shauf, a folk singer from Canada, has done just that. Back in 2017, Shauf played with a band and strings (and long hair), but this time around he has focussed on the acoustic guitar (and cut his hair). Good decision on both counts. Following a well-trodden path blazed by folk singers like Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan, Tracy Chapman and Paul Simon – to name a few – Shauf has succeeded in stripping his music down to the bare essentials whilst gaining visceral power. His new songs are linear, often told from the next day’s perspective, when the head is throbbing and the mouth is dry.