Pick of the Political Pops: Wings “Give Ireland Back To The Irish”

Given that, by any measure, the Brexit negotiations are an absolute dog’s dinner led by someone labelled as ‘as thick as mince’ by an ex-colleague you’d have been forgiven for thinking that things couldn’t get any worse. Then the DUP tail started wagging the Tory dog. Like they didn’t see it coming. Crikey. Obviously we at Americana-UK Towers don’t have a solution (well we did but got blind drunk and forgot it the next morning) but we are intrigued by all possibilities. Here is the ‘non-political’ ex-Beatle and band suggesting something…

Various “Sonic Blooms: UK Alt-Folk and New Roots Rising” (Folk and Honey 2017)

Folk and Honey, the leading UK gig listing website, is behind this compendium of emerging UK folk and roots talent and, as per the website’s MO for providing a platform for new artists that deserve an audience, the purpose of this double album is much the same. The first of what is billed as an annual venture showcasing a carousel of different sub-genres, Sonic Blooms is a particularly interesting offering that hits the target far more frequently than it misses (if indeed the weaker offerings herein can even be considered ‘misses’). Continue reading “Various “Sonic Blooms: UK Alt-Folk and New Roots Rising” (Folk and Honey 2017)”

Lilly Hiatt announces dates and UK release date for new album

Lilly Hiatt’s “Trinity Lane” has its UK release on February 2nd 2018 via New West Records and she’s also announced UK dates for April. The 12-song set was produced by Michael Trent of Shovels & Rope and engineered by Andy Dixon at Trent’s Studio Bees in Johns Island, SC. In addition to Hiatt’s backing band, Trent is featured as a musician throughout, and is joined by his wife and Shovels & Rope partner Cary Ann Hearst for backing vocals on “Everything I Had.” Here are those dates. Continue reading “Lilly Hiatt announces dates and UK release date for new album”

RS lists the best country and americana albums of 2017

Rolling Stone has published its annual list of the best country and americana albums of the last 12 months, and while we won’t spoil the whole list or what position anyone is in, it’s a great read with notable americana inclusions from Alison Krauss, David Rawlings, Turnpike Troubadours, lovely beardy Cory Branan, Hiss Golden Messenger (almost seems incongruous having HGM and Brad Paisley in the same chart but life’s rich tapestry), ertswhile Foo Fighter Chris Shiflett, Lily Hiatt, Chris Staplegun and of course Jeremy Hunt’s nemesis, our very own Jason Isbell.  The number one is exceptionally well deserved too – you can head over to RS to see the full list.  Continue reading “RS lists the best country and americana albums of 2017”

The Levellers announce new acoustic record

Celebrating their 30th anniversary next year, Brighton folk-punk band Levellers will be releasing “We The Collective” on March 9th via the band’s own label, On The Fiddle Recordings.  Wanting to do something a bit different with their back catalogue, they brought in a string section and enlisted producer John Leckie (Radiohead, Stone Roses) to help develop new acoustic arrangements for eight of their previous singles including ‘Liberty’, ‘Hope Street’ and ‘One Way’ which they recorded straight to tape at Abbey Road Studios. They also recorded two new songs ‘Shame’  which you can see the video for below (which is excellent, very moving),  and ‘Drug Bust McGee’ about a yet to be told expose of the Strictly star.  Oh and there’s some tour dates too which are here: Continue reading “The Levellers announce new acoustic record”

Jason Isbell song appears in new Gaga film

A musical you might actually want to watch, like the silver lining in a big dark cloud. Rolling Stone reports: “Eighty years after it was first put on film, and 41 years after a turbulent but hugely successful remake starring Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson, the latest version of A Star Is Born is headed to movie theaters once again. Also a starring vehicle for Judy Garland in 1954, the oft-told tale of a show-business couple at opposite ends of their fame, returns to the big screen with a wide-ranging soundtrack featuring song on which the film’s star, first-time director Bradley Cooper collaborated with Jason Isbell, Lukas Nelson, Mark Ronson and Lady Gaga, who co-stars with Cooper. Continue reading “Jason Isbell song appears in new Gaga film”