One Track Mind: John Hiatt, “Terms of My Surrender” from Terms of My Surrender (2014)

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In a twist, John Hiatt’s most oakenly confidential, quietly effective song in some time arrives as the advance track from an album produced by his guitarist, Doug Lanceo.

Lanceo, who has also worked with Jack Ingram and Patty Griffin, encouraged Haitt to pick up the acoustic for the first time in years, and the results — as heard here on the title track — are startling in their unplugged, unadorned emotion.

Hiatt’s explores the tender high range in his gravel fishtail of a voice, even as he admits everything about the wonders, and the terrors, of love. “Terms of My Surrender” isn’t trying to say too much and, in so doing, it says as much as Hiatt ever has. In the end, he presciently reminds, all that’s left is the one you’ve chosen to be with.

That goes for passionate embraces, and for recording sessions, too. Sounds like he picked the right one, in both cases. Terms of My Surrender, recorded with Hiatt’s regular touring band and boasting a similarly live feel throughout, is due on July 15, 2014 via New West Records.

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