TOM Russell is a master at the story telling song form (he is also an acclaimed author). While his style has changed little over the course of his 40-year career, he is prolific and in a rich stream of form.

Folk Hotel continues the Texan and prairie influences of recent releases and gives a strong favour of the American South West. Like the landscapes, most of the settings are sparse but skilfully contrived – this is music in service of the lyric.

I’ll Never Leave These Horses is a touching song about ageing while Rise Again, Handsome Johnny laments JFK through a series of episodic flashes. The Last Time I Saw Hank is arguably the best song, more of a short story set to a finger-picked guitar where the meaning hovers tantalisingly close but out of reach.

The music can connect too; All On A Belfast Morning, aimed at Dylan Thomas (with a musical nod to Gerry Raffferty) has an anthemic quality, which is a rarity on this long album where the listener can drink in the passing words. An experience to be savoured.

Tom Russell plays Leeds Brudenell Social Club on November 26 and Pocklington Arts Centre on November 28.