Recorded as an extension of the band At the Spine, the Beautiful Sunsets' full-length proves to be more than worth the separate division in the project.
Mike Spine is restless and relentless. There's really no overlooking this fact in the face of Coalminers & Moonshiners. Its very existence is owed to that fact. Spine simply had too much great material on his plate that didn't fit in with his excellent main project, punk band At the Spine. That he decided to go ahead and release the down-trodden low-key folk songs as a separate entity is a very welcome surprise, especially considering how adept he is in that songwriting mode. Everything on Coalminers & Moonshiners works spectacularly. It even inexplicably manages to never overstay its welcome, even at 14 tracks in length. The level of songwriting and arrangement skill on display throughout its entirety is not only admirable but enviable. The Beautiful Sunsets is a sound that suits Spine well. Here's to hoping he does more with it.