Various artists

Angola Prison—Spirituals

Angola Prison—Spirituals is a brand-new CD due out on Aug. 12 ( But its contents are actually from the late 1950s, recorded inside Louisiana’s Angola State Prison by the late folklorist Dr. Harry Oster. The album consists of Oster’s 1958-released collection called Angola Prison Spirituals plus nine previously unreleased tracks culled from the numerous tapes Oster left behind after his death. It’s all incredibly rootsy and soulful, but one of the standouts for me is “Brother Mosely Crossed the Water,” performed by Andy Mosely, who sings and plays washboard, accompanied by Hogman Maxey on guitar. Mosely’s habit of being slightly (but obviously) out-of-tune on certain notes when he sings (see also song No. 1, “I’m On My Way”) is as perfectly cool as when jazz bassist Ron Carter does that very same thing on his upright.