Jason Isbell Reunites with DBT in Nashville – Watch

Late to the party with this one sorry (it was a difficult weekend for the world. Jason would understand). RS Country reports: “Jason Isbell reunited with the Drive-By Truckers Thursday night, joining his old band for a one-off performance of the Decoration Day track “Heathens” at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium. Taking the stage not as a frontman, but as a guitar-playing sideman, Isbell spent the entirety of the performance on stage right, flashing smiles at bandleader Patterson Hood and picking out descending riffs on his guitar. The appreciation was mutual, with a grinning Hood leaving the microphone stand multiple times to stand by Isbell’s side. If there was bad blood between the two songwriters upon Isbell’s exit from the group in 2007, it’s all water under the bridge now, with the video above showcasing a pair of Americana kingpins who have made amends as they continue to make career-defining music.  Continue reading “Jason Isbell Reunites with DBT in Nashville – Watch”

Levi Cuss ‘’Night Thief’’ (Independent, 2017)

Who is Levi Cuss? If you listen to this record you might just find out, delving into a dark past and redemption through the salvation of music and poetry. Joining the thriving ”Canamericana’’ group of artists driving Americana music forward and out of a predominantly southern heritage, Levi has created an honest and raw record with no frills and dripped with gorgeous steel guitar wailing to accompany his laments, and great blues guitar to texture his more salacious background, not dissimilarly to Steve Earle in his Terraplane record. Continue reading “Levi Cuss ‘’Night Thief’’ (Independent, 2017)”

Dirty Dozen: Heath Green and the Makeshifters

Heath Green and The Makeshifters’ self-titled debut album will be released on limited vinyl, CD, digital and streaming formats March 3rd via Alive Naturalsound Records. The Birmingham, AL-based band’s heavy sound has been compared to Leon Russell & The Shelter People, Joe Cocker and Humble Pie. Continue reading “Dirty Dozen: Heath Green and the Makeshifters”

Megan & The Common Threads – “Stories To Tell” (Independent, 2016)

This six track EP shows that Britain can do contemporary country just as well if not better than America.  From Nashville, but now living in London, Megan O’Neill and her five piece band (who co-write the songs with her) have a polished country sound that, while it has poppy overtones has just enough grit to keep it interesting and stop it sliding into that formulaic Nashville sound.  Yes there are big choruses, yes there are hooks galore, yes there are big ballads and yes there’s a rocky number or two but the band make them their own.  They play with style and panache, with Mairead Furlong’s fiddle being particularly notable, and O’Neill’s crystal and emotive vocals carry everything along perfectly. Continue reading “Megan & The Common Threads – “Stories To Tell” (Independent, 2016)”

Dirty Dozen: The Whiskey Gentry

Following the release of their first two acclaimed albums, Please Make Welcome (2011) and Holly Grove (2013), the Atlanta-based band The Whiskey Gentry are set to release their third full-length studio album entitled Dead Ringer on April 7th. On it, the husband and wife duo of Lauren Staley & Jason Morrow and bandmates have created an effort that builds on many of the sounds of their previous albums – incorporating deep country, Americana, honky-tonk, bluegrass and a stiff shot of gritty rock ’n’ roll, yet it also finds the band testing themselves and pushing beyond their own boundaries. Continue reading “Dirty Dozen: The Whiskey Gentry”

Billy Bragg & Joe Henry @ Celtic Connections. The Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow: 26th January 2017

A bit fanciful I suppose to imagine that Bragg & Henry were taking their train theme a bit too literally tonight with the show arriving almost 40 minutes late, the pair taking to the stage after 10 pm. The reality was that the hall had hosted an earlier event, the upshot a steady stream of people leaving before the end, no doubt to catch their own transport. Unfortunately this included your intrepid reporter so we can’t comment on the finale or any encores. Continue reading “Billy Bragg & Joe Henry @ Celtic Connections. The Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow: 26th January 2017”

Brigitte DeMeyer & Will Kimbrough “Mockingbird Soul” (BDM Music, 2017)

Despite the fact that Brigitte DeMeyer and Will Kimbrough have been working together for six years and collaborated on two albums Mockingbird Soul is their first official release as a duo. There are lots of influences here; blues, gospel, early jazz, bluegrass, folk. Music that DeMeyer characterises as acoustic soul. DeMeyer has a wonderfully soulful and sultry voice that has in the past been compared to the best of Emmylou, Lucinda and Bonnie Raitt. There are certainly a couple of tracks here that bring to Bonnie to mind, not least the title track and Rainy Day, both of which typify what the album is all about; crystal clear vocals, beautifully symbiotic harmonies and sparse, minimalistic accompaniment. On Mockingbird Soul that accompaniment is restricted to Will’s favourite instrument, his vintage Gibson J-45 while Rainy Day allows Chris Wood on Upright Bass to lead the way. Continue reading “Brigitte DeMeyer & Will Kimbrough “Mockingbird Soul” (BDM Music, 2017)”

Ramblin’ Roots Revue 2017 announced

If you like the idea of watching quality americana while guzzling down some decent nosh and drinking yourself into oblivion, you’ll be delighted to hear about a celebration of roots, americana, folk and alt-country music which will be taking placed alongside fine beer, whisky and food held at Bucks Students’ Union’s award winning venue in High Wycombe, across the weekend of 7th/8th/9th of April 2017. Clubhouse Records and local micro-brewery the Rebellion Beer Company are launching the event which features over 20 acts from the USA and the UK, playing on two stages, starting on Friday evening and running throughout the day and late into the night on Saturday before rounding off with the “Ramblin’ Roots Sunday Brunch”.  Continue reading “Ramblin’ Roots Revue 2017 announced”

Cup ‘O Joe ‘’Bluebirds’’ (Independent, 2016)

You can be forgiven for not having heard of Cup ‘O Joe before. A gypsy-folk and bluegrass trio from Northern Ireland are as far from mainstream consciousness as you’d expect, but that isn’t such a bad thing, because it allows them to continue on with their gorgeous blend of gentle bluegrass picking, beautiful folk melodies and mellow harmonies throughout Bluebirds, this fantastic EP.
Continue reading “Cup ‘O Joe ‘’Bluebirds’’ (Independent, 2016)”