• Record Label: Rounder
  • Release Date: Jul 7, 2009
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 20 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20

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  1. JamesR
    Jul 8, 2009
    Pretty good album. For the first time since Sebastopol, Farrar consistently evokes an emotional response with his music. And it's mostly a good one. Some of the tunes sound overly familiar and lack originality. However, it's still much more consistently pleasant than his last several efforts.
  2. clayH
    Jul 11, 2009
    I really like this effort by Jay and the boys this time around. It's not "Trace" of course, but it's not "The Search" either. The album is mature, solid, and soothing on various levels. Jay seems to have found his peace and wisdom which could be a blessing for all us fans. Hey Pitchfork, a 37 score get real! I guess being stranded in your "ivory tower" feels nice for you.
  3. DebK
    Jul 12, 2009
    He is no Jeff Tweedy, but he taint half bad.
  4. May 10, 2013
    Son Volt's American Central Dust contains some of the best of the country rock genre. Tracks such as No Turning Back and Jukebox of Steel are pure delight. Jay Farrar and company are an American treasure.

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 20
  2. Negative: 2 out of 20
  1. American Central Dust doesn't have the feel of a step into new territory the way Son Volt's past two albums did, but it consolidates old strengths and confirms Jay Farrar is still an artist worth caring about to 20 years after Uncle Tupelo cut their first album.
  2. While American Central Dust falls short of "Trace's" heights, the album showcases Farrar's excellent songwriting, which is comfortingly familiar. It’s also a little monotonous.
  3. Son Volt's label debut, American Central Dust, is some of the sleepiest protest music ever made: Every song saunters by at a slow tempo, Farrar's voice sounds increasingly inexpressive, and John Agnello's production makes everything sound real purdy but lifeless.