Amber Headlights – Harp
By Kevin Forest Moreau
Amber Headlights is a collection of “works in progress” from 2001 and early 2002, after the dissolution of the Afghan Whigs and before the Twilight Singers side project evolved into singer Greg Dulli’s primary musical outlet. (Dulli shelved the songs after the sudden death of his friend, filmmaker Ted Demme.) Yes, these multihued rockers and anthemic slow-burners fill in the gaps between the full-bodied rock ‘n’ soul of the Whigs’ swan-song 1964 and the more nocturnal atmospherics of the Twilight Singers’ 2003 release, Blackberry Belle (two of these songs, “Cigarette” and “Get the Wheel,” later appeared as Belle’s “Follow You Down”). More than that, however, the album’s various subtle shadings-the visceral stomp-boogie of “So Tight,” the mood-drenched wah-wah guitar of “Early Today (and Later That Night),” the softly insinuating groove of “Wicked”-paint an absorbing picture of an artist confidently feeling his way into new emotional and creative territory.