Karl Blau + The Empty House Band, The Boileroom, Guildford, 24th August 2017

Karl Blau took to the stage adorned in a dark suit that was splashed and stained with Jackson Pollock like whitewash. It’s a decent bet that the suit is something created by himself and indicative in a way of his career path. Based in the small town of Anacortes in Washington State, oyster farmer Blau (and his many associated bands) made many a record as part of the eclectic Knw-Yr-Own/K-Roc Records collective. His introduction to the larger market came via Bella Union’s aptly titled 2016 covers compilation Introducing Karl Blau with many of the songs from that collection featured in tonight’s show. Continue reading “Karl Blau + The Empty House Band, The Boileroom, Guildford, 24th August 2017”

Jeremy Corbyn reaches a new level of americoolna

If you thought it wasn’t possible for Jezza to exceed his already near god-like status in the eyes of us liberal americana types, the photo below just goes to confirm that he really is the cat’s pyjamas. The screenshot from a recent TV interview with JC demonstrates that he has, apart from great politics, also impeccable reading taste. With a copy of Richmond Fontaine’s frontman Willy Vlautin’s debut novel The Motel Life apparently nestling among his book collection, Jezza scores ultimate points for coolness. Continue reading “Jeremy Corbyn reaches a new level of americoolna”

Jason Isbell picks all female artists for Nashville residency

One day this won’t even be news. Rolling Stone Country reports: “Jason Isbell will perform six sold-out concerts at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium in October, a run that will further raise his profile as the face of the Americana genre. And the singer-songwriter, who will be backed by his longtime band the 400 Unit, is using the engagement to make his own statement on the role of women in the music business – all six shows will feature a female supporting act. Continue reading “Jason Isbell picks all female artists for Nashville residency”

Peter James Millson “Mobile” (Haven, 2017)

Produced by the acclaimed songwriter, Boo Hewerdine, this record is the third by photographer Millson (who has worked for no less than the NME and the Guardian). Clearly an unassuming chap, he plays down his music-making credentials with offhand comments on his website which point to his agenda being far more ‘cottage industry’ than ‘world domination’. Notwithstanding, Millson keeps good company – Hewerdine, Martha Tilson, Adrian McNally (of The Unthanks). His evident tendency toward humility, however, rather belies his deft knack for a melody as is capably demonstrated throughout “Mobile”. Continue reading “Peter James Millson “Mobile” (Haven, 2017)”

The Whiskey Charmers “The Valley” (Sweet Apple Pie, 2017)

They may not have invited the audience to lick peanut butter off their chests like Iggy Pop, but Detroit band The Whiskey Charmers hold their former neighbour in high esteem. “Clearly Iggy Pop is doing something right. It’s really inspiring to see that he is still out there performing at age 70 and still shirtless. This might be a great way to connect with our audience,” reckons singer Carrie Shepherd, suggesting that guitarist Lawrence Daversa be the first one in the band to try it out.  Continue reading “The Whiskey Charmers “The Valley” (Sweet Apple Pie, 2017)”

Peter James Millson “Somewhere” – Listen

Peter James Millson’s last album was produced by Danny Champ and his new one “Mobile” is produced by Boo Hewerdine – what better credentials do you need?  Talking about the track Somewhere from his new record, he told us: “I can’t get anything done if there’s too much stimulation: too much noise, too much sound, too many people. I wrote this song about finding a place to go when you want to remember who you really are. The verse about a butterfly and washing on the line is a genuine transcription of events as they unfolded when writing this on a summer morning just outside the back door.”