For a man who is so frighteningly adept at evoking the existential anguish wavering from the bottom of a glass, it’s both striking and relieving to hear Eitzel find some repose from the storm.
Don’t Be a Stranger is out-of-sorts in the best way, as Eitzel forever plays the outsider looking in.
Now he revels in the delicate inner elements of his voice rather than growling over them, and sounds more natural and inviting than ever.
Don’t Be a Stranger is his best album in years.
If the best parts of Don’t Be a Stranger find Eitzel making a welcome return—inviting us to make that titular offer to him—it’s a return as a great songwriter and band leader.