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Despite sounding as if it was written in a mossy cabin in America’s Pacific Northwest or the dusty Texas plains, “No Light Will Shine on Me” was actually penned by Green Like July, who hail not from Austin or Portland, but from Turin, Italy.
Don’t expect, however, for “No Light Will Shine on Me” to sound like Top Chef’s Fabio Viviani fronting The Elected. On this track the twangy crooning Andrea Poggio or Nicola Crivello, the band’s vocalists, never belie their country of origin.
Perhaps A.J. Mogis and Doug Van Sloun, who produced and mastered the song, respectively, hold the key to pinpointing “No Light Will Shine on Me”’s elusive geographic center. As it turns out, “No Light Will Shine on Me” was recorded in Omaha, Nebraska, home to Saddle Creek Records – Conor Oberst’s melancholic musical empire. Mogis is known for his ongoing contribution to Saddle Creek releases, though it is his brother Mike’s work with Rilo Kiley that reverberates through this track which boasts florid guitar and lap steel’s melancholy beauty common to much of the Jenny Lewis/Blake Sennett partnership. Van Sloun completes the picture, for he has mastered Rilo Kiley’s work, as well as a slew of other Saddle Creek releases.
Although songs of its type are written frequently, “No Light Will Shine on Me” rings true because Green Like July’s experiment with Americana is neither mawkish nor distractingly derivative. Instead, its well-worn melody strikes the ear effortlessly, offering up the comfort of a prairie cabin rather than a villa in Tuscany.