Tim Hus Hockeytown

This hardworking Albertan troubadour has already been anointed Stompin' Tom Connors' successor by the man himself. And it's easy to hear why on this, Hus's fifth album. Like Connors, he writes about Canadians from coast to coast, from Atlantic fishermen to Hamilton steelworkers, Sasquatch hunters and, inevitably, hockey lovers. Even the one cover song here (Tom Wilson's "Talkin' Saskatoon Blues") ties in with that mandate. Hus writes and sings in unadorned fashion, though the production values are above-par, thanks to the co-production of Barry Allen (Corb Lund). He takes a well-deserved shot at Music City on "Country Music Lament," declaring: "Nashville, you ought to be ashamed, it ain't so grand on the Opry stage." There's scant chance he'll get invited there anytime soon, but he'll continue to be welcomed warmly in the Great White North. (Stony Plain)