Any album boasting 27 tracks better have one of two things going for it; One-minute songs or a legendary artist working diligently at the peak of his craft. In this case, we are lucky enough to have the latter.

Following the Memphis-tinged rawness that was Honeycomb , Frank Black gained as many new fans as he lost old ones. After a million new rock bands admitted their Pixies worship, Black has been anointed as one of the most prolific and talented songwriters of the past 20 years. This CD is full and fascinating, lifted by Black's swift and virile songwriting.

“If Your Poison Gets You” is countrified and verbally pop-fueled, setting a tone for a record that includes classics like “Dirty Old Town “(Made famous by the Pogues) and humorous strummers like “I'm Not Dead (I'm in Pittsburgh).”

The second CD rocks a little harder, but Black manages to navigate certain musical landscapes with trepidation, never fully committing to one specific style. That, and lyrics like “Living hammered is always hit or miss” from the first single “Fitzgerald” make this as distinctive as his best work. Still, the CD could have used a slight edit, for 27 tracks may just prove to be a little too much.   

Grade: B