Although Stacey Earle and (husband) Mark Stuart have been a personal and professional duo since the early 1990s, onstage the billing has always been "Stacey Earle". Two studio albums and one double live album (the co-billed Must Be Live - Stacey Earle and Mark Stuart") later, the couple is now officially a duo with Never Gonna Let You Go.
Stacey takes the lead on the the opening track Man In the Moon, which could be taken literally or as a metaphor for a lover ("he sleeps all day / shine with them stars at night / he's out living the big city cat nightlife / no one ever sees him standing in with the crowd").
From there, Earle and Stuart take turns, a Stuart song followed by an Earle song. There are gems in here, such as Stuart's Looking for Fool's Gold ("you're looking for fool's gold, you don't want to know / in front of your face is a vein of pure gold").
The disc gives equal time for both artists, and the chemistry that they have onstage carries over to the studio. Purists like me, though, who were so taken with Earle when the stark and simply-produced Simple Gearle debuted in '92 might pine for a simpler time - and maybe a tad less studio gloss, but the two do make wonderful (acoustic) music together.
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