Truckstop Honeymoon, Great Big Family (Squirrel)

If you want to know what’s been happening with Truckstop Honeymoon since their Katrina-induced Kansas relocation, it’s all right here. The fifth disc from the husband-and-wife acoustic duo Mike West and Katie Euliss continues their highly personal, autobiographical songwriting that’s so honest and revealing, their lives may as well be on display in a New York City department store window. Whether it’s family additions, aging, farewell to the single life and hello to mainstream mommyhood, change is the prevailing theme here. On the cleverly concocted “The Girl I Used to Be,” Euliss stages a faux memorial service of her former self, then launches into a peppier second movement where vestiges of a past life—mink coats and snakeskin boots—are also cast aside. West recalls a conversation with a fellow evacuee (“The River & The Lake”) and reflects upon various relationships that, at this point, are mostly memories (“Georgia & Blue,” “Don’t Think”).

Yet, not every song ties into change. The swing-styled “The Cover of the N.Y.T” sarcastically celebrates being on the cover of the New York Times despite the catastrophe that got them there. “Sinner’s Prayer” is even more outrageous. West fumbles for positive thoughts regarding the dearly deceased only to summon up: “I hope you have them fooled in heaven like you had ’em fooled on Earth / And you’re taking all the saints for everything they’re worth.” Even though change means a Midwestern existence these days, a New Orleans sensibility, offbeat humor and counterculture street life will always be ingrained in their music.