The music of Jordan O’Jordan reminds me of Andrew Weathers. Neither are truly west coast sounds beyond layman’s visions of the post-Dust Bowl west, but both maintain a positive witticism that borders on naivete, if not for how tuned in they are to peril. So, in some ways, there is a Steinbeck altruism running through these sort of folksy narratives. Where O’Jordan and Weathers deviate is instrumental, which changes the approach of Through Tough Thoughts from the listener’s prospective. Where the pastoral, almost orchestral majesty of Weathers seems to go above adversity, O’Jordan — as the title of his cassette suggests — runs headlong into the hurdles, knocking them down with farm muscle. Banjo and harmonium are the weapons of choice, with only O’Jordan’s fragile voice to give them humanity. O’Jordan seems to bully away the worst of human nature, fighting the beast with his own feral feelings. And we all need the fuel to face the worst of each day; sometimes that calls for a harder edge, but O’Jordan is the sort of down-is-up remedy. That old visage of a punch drunk boxer, limbs akimbo to meet the challenge of the Goliath. Through Tough Thoughts is the plucky antidote to mundane disappointment from a person, community, or society that dares not to see past its own nose.